Restoring the Bear Creek Marsh

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) approached Ducks Unlimited (DU) about getting our expertise on an ambitious project to repair a 25-acre freshwater impoundment along the Mullica River. The rusty old pipes failed long ago, allowing saltwater to enter the impoundment, killing many species of valuable native plants, and worst of all, allowing non-native Phragmites to revegetate the entire impoundment. In fact, almost every square inch of the impoundment became "choked" with the large, invasive grass. In early 2006, permits were obtained to perform the wetland restoration and the work was completed quickly. By October 2006, large die-offs of Phragmites were already evident, and large flocks of mallards and wood ducks were observed using the impoundment for feeding. As we had hoped, the native grasses have started to come back on their own, and during the fall 2007 migration, waterfowl stopping in should have plenty of high-quality food to eat.

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