Don’t Fence Me Out
That could be the call of Canada geese on Long Creek these days.
If you walked along the Long Creek Trail at First Landing State Park this weekend, you might have noticed some new fencing on the beach and marsh.
First Landing State Park, Lynnhaven River Now and students from Cape Henry Collegiate School and Boy Scout Troop 63 have just finished planting marsh grass and installing some fencing along a 243 ft. section of the trail along the water.
And the fencing is not aimed at human park visitors but at Canada goose visitors that frequent Long Creek.
It is hoped the barrier will keep hungry geese from dining on the new, tasty young shoots of grass.
The fencing should protect the little grasses until they are big enough to do all the good things that marshes do, such as filter sediments and nutrients from rainwater run off and enhance the habitat for all sorts of wildlife crabs, fish and all birds, not just Canada geese.
The project was hard work, because volunteers, not only had to plant many little sprigs of grass and erect fencing along the shoreline, but first they also had to rake back a heavy layer of oyster shells from the beach.
In the top photo Cape Henry School students rake oysters shells off the beach. At the bottom, Lynnhaven River Now volunteer, Kevin DuBois in blue works with boy scouts from troop 63 to put up fencing.
The shells were initially placed along parts of Long Creek as a living shoreline to create oyster reefs. But in the process shell also had been piled up on the beach to help control an erosion problem.
Now the oyster shells have done their job and the shoreline has been stabilized.
It was was time to return the shoreline to its natural marsh grass habitati, said Erik Molleen, District Resource Specialist for the Virginia Dept. of Conservation and Recreation .