US Army Corps of Engineers
New England District

Bird Island Environmental Restoration

Working with the local sponsor, which is the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (Office of Coastal Zone Management and Division of Fisheries & Wildlife, Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program), the New England District completed a feasibility study under the Section 206 Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Program that recommended a plan to restore and protect roseate tern nesting habitat on Bird Island in Buzzards Bay. The northeastern population of roseate terns is listed as endangered at both the federal and state levels of jurisdiction, and Bird Island supports over 20 percent of the Northeastern population.

The revetment that protects the island is in poor condition, and coastal storms are eroding the vegetation and sand that roseate terns need for nesting. The Corps completed the Detailed Project Report and Environmental Assessment in October 2006 and received a letter of support for the project from the sponsor in 2008. The recommended plan in the report entails reconstructing the revetment and restoring substrates for tern nesting. The recommended plan also provides mitigation at an offsite location in Dartmouth for unavoidable impacts to salt marsh.

The Corps and the Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game executed a project partnership agreement on June 30, 2011 and have resumed work on the project design. The Corps is scheduled to complete plans and specifications in 2014 in preparation for construction in 2015, subject to Federal and State funding and Sate permitting requirements.

For more information, please contact the Project Manager, by e-mail or by calling 978-318-8547.

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