Northumberland Strait Coastal Restoration Project

Fall 2019 Newsletter

Greetings friends! The holidays will soon be upon us, so let's take a look back at the Northumberland Strait Coastal Restoration Project's activities this fall!

Project Partner Meeting 2019

Project partners on site in Merigomish.

We kicked off the fall season with our third Project Partner Meeting. From September 10th to 12th, our partners specializing in habitat restoration joined us for site visits to provide recommendations for our next steps in the permitting and restoration stages of each site.

We visited the Millbrook First Nation Greenhouse to examine space that could be used to grow salt marsh grasses to plant during restoration.  Thanks to greenhouse facilities staff and Peter Steiner, Project Coordinator of The Confederacy of Mainland Mi'kmaq Pollinator Action Project, for showing us around!
Partners reviewed the progress made so far with each restoration site and made recommendations about the next steps the project team should take on the road to restoration.
At the Pictou Landing First Nation Fisheries Department, we got to see the reef balls The Confederacy of Mainland Mi'kmaq has been constructing in partnership with Pictou Landing First Nation Fisheries Department and community members to install at the Sitmu'k restoration site.

"Perspectives on Building Community Coastal Resiliency"
A Panel Discussion in Tatamagouche

Panelists joined us from CB Wetlands and Environmental Specialists, Restore America's Estuaries, Save the Bay - Narragansett Bay, The Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Tampa Bay Watch, The Confederacy of Mainland Mi'kmaq, and Boreas Heritage Consulting Inc.

Thank you to all the community members who joined us in Tatamagouche on September 10th for a panel discussion and networking event entitled, “Perspectives on Building Community Coastal Resiliency”.  And a huge thank you also goes to our project partners, the featured panelists for the evening, who shared their perspectives on everything from restoration techniques, to collaboration between groups, and community action on coastal policy. Additional thanks go to The Grace Jollymore Joyce Arts Centre for hosting us, and project volunteer, Joan MacKeigan, for her organizational support and tending the bar during the networking session!

Stay tuned as we make the footage from the panel discussion available for public viewing!

Restoration Site Updates

We've worked with our partners - both local and international - to assess, select, and monitor sites for restoration, and we've listened to the stories, memories, and knowledge of community members across the region.  Now, each site is in different stages, but between permitting, archaeological assessments, consultation, restoration design planning, and restoration construction, we're excited to say that we're fully immersed in restoration activities!

continue to align the planning and restoration of these sites with communities’ interests and priorities.  We've also continued to engage communities by sharing skills via volunteer and training opportunities.  Read on to learn more!

MacLean Lane, Marshall's Crossing

Construction is complete in Marshall's Crossing! In October, we excavated the old, degraded culverts and replaced them with a new bridge that allows more tidal flow as seen above.
Before restoration, failing and undersized culverts blocked the tidal flow (above left), and after construction (above right), tidal access improved for the first time in 50 years!
During construction, we took precautions to lessen our impact on the habitat around us. We installed silt fences to prevent too much soil from entering the waterway (above left) and rescued fish while excavation temporarily blocked the watercourse (above left).
Watch our awesome new culvert-to-bridge restoration video!
Thank you to our partners! We especially couldn't have done it without CB Wetlands and Environmental Specialists, Boreas Heritage Inc., and Baxter Bridges and Construction, who each played key roles in the restoration process.

Ferguson's Cove, Brule Point

During their site visit at Brule Point, our project partners provided recommendations about restoration techniques that would be appropriate for restoring marshes that are experiencing vegetation die-off that results from impounded water and historical agricultural use. 
We're grateful for the ongoing community support for our work on this site and we are committed to continuing to work closely with the surrounding community as we develop our restoration plans for this site. 

Thank you to Sustainable Northern Nova Scotia for hosting a lovely meet and greet so folks working with many of the other local organizations in the surrounding area could meet members of our team, learn more about the project, find out about ways to get involved, and for sharing recommendations for our next steps!

Sitmu'k, Pictou Landing First Nation

We are thrilled to work closely with the community of Pictou Landing First Nation and our partners at The Confederacy of Mainland Mi'kmaq to restore and enhance the coastal resiliency of tidal wetland habitat in Sitmu'k, also known as Moodie's Cove.
In September, we worked with Pictou Landing First Nation School's grade 7/8 students, who led the rest of the school in harvesting seeds from the Sitmu'k saltmarsh.  With continued involvement from the students, we hope to grow these seeds over winter and so they can be planted by the youth and other community members in the marsh next spring!

Seed Collection

To further support our plans to plant saltmarsh grasses in Sitmu'k next spring, our team has been busy collecting seeds from across the Northumberland Strait region and processing them in preparation for propagation in 2020. 

Thank you Friends of the Pugwash Estuary for allowing us to use the saltmarsh at your headquarters as one of our donor marshes for seeds!

Welcome to Our Canadian Conservation Corps Interns

Riley Watts (above left) during seed collection at Cape Jourimain and Dominique Miegium (above right) in the Dartmouth Clean Office. 
Our team welcomed our first interns from the Canadian Conservation Corps program this fall, Riley Watts and Dominique Mieguim. Run by the Canadian Wildlife Federation, this program is part of the Canada Service Corps and provides youth with the opportunity to explore different aspects of conservation work across Canada. 
Originally from the West Coast, Riley will be headed to Montreal after this to work on community programs inspired by her time here and prepare for university. 

An early-stage biologist, Dominique is headed to the United Nations Climate Conference in Madrid this December, before she heads back to Brampton to continue conservation work. 

Thank you Dominique and Riley for all your hard work, creativity, and much appreciated contributions to the Northumberland Strait Coastal Restoration Project this fall! We wish you the best of luck in your future endeavours.
Find out more about the Canadian Conservation Corps!

Happy Holidays!

From all of us at Clean, we wish you and yours a happy and safe holiday season! We look forward to sharing new and exciting updates in the new year! 
Thank you! Wela’lioq!
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