Stratford’s Great Meadows Marsh will get an upgrade to protect birds and wildlife

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Key part of Fairfield County coastline receives $ 4 million investment. Construction will begin next week to restore the Great Meadows Marsh in Stratford, Connecticut’s largest undrained salt marsh block.

Corrie Folsum-O’Keefe, director of bird conservation at Audubon Connecticut, said swamps like this provide habitat for wildlife.

The salt marsh is home to the rare snowy owl and endangered species like the pink marsh flower and the salt marsh sparrow. Saltwater pockets are important habitat for horseshoes and fish such as capucettes and menhaden to spawn.

She said the project will also protect the Connecticut coastline.

“There is a lot of restoration that needs to take place over the next 10 to 15 years to ensure that our marshes can continue to provide wildlife habitat and protection for coastal communities by soaking up flood waters,” Folsum said. -O’Keefe.

The plan is to restore 33 acres of the area by improving the flow of salt water to the marshes, building nesting habitat for birds, and planting more than 170,000 native plants and shrubs.

US Senator Richard Blumenthal said it was not just a victory for the environment, but a victory for the community.

“We know it will bring more recreation, more fishing, more bird watching – all the great activities and economic drivers that are so important,” said Blumenthal.

Great Meadows Marsh, part of the Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, once spanned 1,400 acres, but is now half the size due to poor land management, invasive plants and sea ​​level rise.


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