Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Terry’s Point keeps expanding...

Another dive we look forward to each spring is our Terry’s Point restoration site in Long Island Sound. This National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) funded project is about 1.5 miles east of our largest restoration site, St. Thomas Point. Both sites are in Southold.

The Terry’s Point project began as a test planting site in our first NFWF grant and has developed into a large-scale restoration project. Our first work here involved transplanting 500 shoots in June 2005 followed by 500 shoots in August 2005. The August shoots eventually all died for a number of reasons, while the June shoots survived and grew from 500 to 4,500 shoots by September of 2006. Not too bad! This growth even exceeds what we have seen at St. Thomas Point where it is deeper, the exposure is a little different and we tend to get more erosion.

Today’s dive at Terry’s proved that the site is still doing well and densities are extremely high. We haven’t measured shoot density here in almost two years, but I am sure that it is higher than St. Thomas just by their appearance. We will have to bring out a couple quadrats and count shoots soon.

One major difference observed today between the two sites was the snail (Lacuna vincta) community. I described the snails at St. Thomas in my last post. The snails at Terry’s were much larger and easier to see; some were even laying eggs. The very small snails were also there like St. Thomas, but the adults were much easier to find. There was also a difference in the number of egg masses with the Terry’s egg masses reaching densities I have never witnessed (above left).

I look forward to getting back to this site soon to add some more plantings, measure shoot density and check on the snails. I am very interested to know if it really is higher than St. Thomas as it appears to be…


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