coa_beach_sweep_debris_deal_lakeClean Ocean Action’s “Wave of Action” held Saturday, March 23, 2013

New Jersey and New York – Today, over one thousand registered volunteers and 27 organizations participated in the fourth Wave of Action For The Shore “Marsh Madness” by clearing out debris and restoring ecosystems in woods, dunes, and marshes at 30 locations throughout New York and New Jersey.

The Waves of Action program is responding to the impacts of Superstorm Sandy and helping improve and protect the marine environment.  COA is engaging its network of organizations, businesses, citizens, and municipalities to help coastal communities throughout New Jersey and New York in need over the long term with monthly volunteer actions. 

Volunteers cleaned out marshes in Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in Brick, Tuckerton Seaport, and marsh areas in Brigantine, NJ and New Dorp, NY.  They removed debris from the waterways of Lake Takanassee in Long Branch, Reedy Creek in Brick, Deal Lake, and the tributaries of the Shark River in Neptune.  Waves of Action volunteers cleaned parks, including Matawan Creek Woods, Jackson Woods in Long Branch, Franklin Lake Park in West Long Branch, and the bays of Sandy Hook.  Volunteers also installed a new osprey nesting platform off Cedar Run Dock Rd. in Stafford Twp.

“This month’s focus is on wildlife habitats to get them ready for the return of migratory species, especially nesting areas,” said Cindy Zipf, Clean Ocean Action Executive Director.

It is important to clean habitats after Superstorm Sandy to protect the wildlife that call those areas home.  These ecosystems support a number of different types of bass and provide nesting and feeding habitat for the piping plover, black skimmer and least tern.  The woodlands throughout New Jersey and New York are frequented by songbirds, woodcock, white-tailed deer, box turtles, and waterfowl.  The area supports many migratory species, including salamanders, turtles and over 325 species of birds as they journey along the Atlantic Flyway. 

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PHOTO: Mother and son, Donna and John came to volunteer at Sandy Hook, NJ, today all the way from Watertown, CT.  They came to support another Sandy Hook close to their hearts.

“Clean Ocean Action working with Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey to help replace osprey nests is a great partnership.  Many nesting sites were destroyed by Superstorm Sandy and it is important to restore these areas for osprey,” said Ben Wurst, Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey Habitat Program Manager.  “At Conserve Wildlife, we rely on volunteers to help with all aspects of osprey protection.  The public is encouraged to inform us of osprey sightings to help create a census of the state population,” he added.  For more information about this program, please visit http://www.conservewildlifenj.org/.

The March 23 Waves of Action also offered workshops and educational presentations about rain gardens, rain barrels, and stormwater management, to help mitigate flooding going forward.

“Waves of Action is a wonderful vehicle for our community to open up our first Little Silver Environmental Day to others in Monmouth County,” said Susan Murray, Little Silver Environmental Commission Member. “Our Environmental Commission wants to help make it more convenient to preserve our resources by offering relevant workshops, recycling opportunities and educational discussions in a centrally located venue,” she added.

“Wreck Pond Watershed Wellness Day” was hosted by the Wreck Pond Brook Watershed Regional Stormwater Management Plan Committee, Monmouth County, Clean Ocean Action, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, AmeriCorps New Jersey Watershed Ambassadors Program, New Jersey Water Savers, and the Rutgers Cooperative Extension Water Resources Program.  The event offered a full day of activities, from a clean up of Wreck Pond, to rain barrel workshops and other educational activities and presentations for kids and adults.

Since the first event in December, Waves of Action has engaged a coalition of over 90 organizations for Superstorm Sandy relief.

“For the Deal Lake Commission, Waves of Action provides vital assistance to clean the largest lake in Monmouth County after a devastating storm,” said Don Brockel, Deal Lake Commission Chairman. “Waves of Action efforts benefit every fisherman, boater, and passive recreational user in Monmouth County.   It also preserves a vital natural resource for the residents of the adjacent municipalities,” he added.

For more information visit fortheshore.org or contact COA at (732) 872-0111.  For a complete list of projects and meeting locations visit http://fortheshore.org/2012/12/06/volunteer/.

 

Clean Ocean Action (CleanOceanAction.org) is a regional, broad-based coalition of 135 conservation, environmental, fishing, boating, diving, student, surfing, women's, business, service, and community groups with a mission to improve and protect coastal and ocean water quality. For over 25 years, COA has been actively engaged in ocean management to ensure a vibrant, diverse, economically robust ecosystem through citizen education, advocacy, and public involvement.