Sunday, July 12, 2009

Anthony Marshall's Bristol Eagle Scout project

Have you noticed the changes in the little mud flat island off Rte 114 opposite Sip 'n Dip in front of Guiteras School? It is the result of Anthony Marshall's Eagle Scout project - the planting and protection of 1000 spartina sea grass shoots!

Anthony, age 17, was looking for a project to become an Eagle Scout and his Dad, Town Council Chair Ken Marshall, suggested he get in touch with Walter Burke, Director of Bristol Parks and Recreation, to see what ideas he might have. It so happen that the little island had been assessed by Save the Bay for a planting of spartina grasses to keep it from sinking. The island had been stripped bare of all grasses by invading geese, swans, flooding and desperately needed attention.

So at 9am with a STB canoe and a skiff Anthony made in middle school, Anthony and his eagle scout buddies along with Save the Bay (Wenley F., Marcia and Stan D. to name three), Christine Marshall, Walter Burke and a few others began the project. It was completed in about 5 hours on Wednesday morning July 8. (The same time many of us were celebrating the life of George Sisson at St Mary's church...George - "There is more to do" - would have loved this project!)

What a wonderful environmental and aesthetic gift this is to the town of Bristol and to the animal and plant communites of Silver Creek.

The muddy wetland island damaged previously by destruction from geese and swans, plays a critical role with its new grasses in improving surface water quality by filtering pollutants, providing flood storage and restoring bio-diversity within Silver Creek - ie increasing fish, shellfish, wading and shore bird use. (I have seen several egrets so far and NO geese.)

The map above shows how this island fits into the larger scheme of Silver Creek.


denise said...

Bravo Anthony and the good ol' USA Boy Scouts! Your project will impact Bristol for generations to come! As the proud mom of 4 Eagle Scouts I wish you the best, and thank you for your determination and commitment to scouting, the community and our nation. As one who samples the waters of Silver Creek with Save Bristol Harbor, I look forward to the cleaner waters that will result from your plantings!
All my best, Denise Arsenault

Derrick D. La Rue said...

I'm kind of tired of the way people seem to always think by changing something in the enviornment it will have a positive effect. I was driving into sip'n'dip on Tuesday July 14, 2009 and what I saw should make people realize that this project is not all postive. The 14 or so Canadaian Geeese were walking through the parking lot to cross the street to get to the gut. They use to fly into the gut, now because of the stakes, they are holding up traffic and putting themselves at risk by crossing the street. Why don't we just leave things alone. The geese aren't the problem, it's humans! Why do we have to endanger geese to grow eel grass. I think this disaster should be stopped! take the stakes out of the island and let nature do it's thing.