DNR Completes Shore Erosion Control Project For Little Deal Island

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New Breakwaters Protect Valuable Wildlife Management Area on Eastern Shore

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources recently completed construction of breakwaters around Little Deal Island. The environmental restoration project protects a portion of the eroding shoreline on the 225-acre island in Somerset County and aims to reduce sedimentation of a nearby channel leading into Wenona Harbor fishing village.

“This year-long project helps to preserve a valuable Wildlife Management Area on the Eastern Shore that is popular with bird watchers, anglers, photographers, boaters, waterfowl hunters and hikers,” said Len Casanova, director of Shoreline Conservation and Management Service at DNR.

The marshy uninhabited island, a short distance away from Greater Deal Island in Tangier Sound, is known for wildlife such as osprey, pelicans, snowy egrets and herons.

“I grew up in the area and for a small island, it’s really rich in wildlife and vegetation,” said Somerset County Administrator Daniel Powell.

The Board of Public Works approved $985,130 in September 2007 to construct seven offshore segmented breakwaters, areas behind the breakwaters with sand and place plants to create new marshy areas.

“We’re very pleased the state was able to step up and ensure that Wenona Harbor stays open,” Powell said. “The sediment build-up we had been seeing in the channel there was affecting watermen and recreational boaters.”

source: DNR press release

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