Shinnecock Bay, once teeming with healthy fish and shellfish vital to Long Island’s environmental and economic health, has faced worsening conditions in the past few decades due to man-made pollution. The Shinnecock Bay Restoration Program continues its effort to improve the bay’s health, enlisting local residents to, quite literally, change the tide.
Brown tides, caused by large amounts of groundwater seepage from high population areas, have harmed and poisoned species such as fin fish, winter flounder, the blue crab and many others important to local fisherman and staples at many restaurants and dinner tables.
Christina Sanotora, director of the restoration program, Stony Brook University and others are spearheading a series of outreach events throughout the summer to involve residents with the restoration of the bay. The events range from lectures, to planting eelgrass habitats,to a benefit dinner. The first event was a lecture entitled “Turning the Brown Tide Blue” held on June 2, at the Quogue Wildlife Refuge. Other events include:
Friday, June 6: The Shinnecock Bay Restoration Program will be featured at the Stony Brook Southampton evening lecture series. 7:30 p.m., Duke Lecture Hall.
Saturday, June 14: Attendees can help restore eelgrass to Shinnecock Bay. Activities at the marine station begin at 10am. Boat trips are available at 9 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Friday, July 11: “Clams for Clams” benefit to increase clam populations.
For more information, visit www.shinnecockbay.org.