Skidaway Island State Park Living Shoreline
Skidaway Island State Park identified an erosional area along the bank of a tidal creek adjacent to the Sandpiper walking trail that was in need of stabilization. Rather than stabilizing the bank using traditional hardened methods like a bulkhead or rip rap, the Park decided to stabilize the shoreline using a “living shoreline” technique. Living Shorelines are a novel engineering approach that provide an alternative to conventional armored shorelines constructed to protect lands lying adjacent to estuarine waters from erosion. Living Shorelines use bioengineering in combination with native vegetation plantings to stabilize or enhance wetland habitats.
Living shorelines implement sustain¬able resources such as oyster shells and native vegetation to create a robust intertidal habitat which improves bio¬diversity and water quality. They also create upland and marine habitat connectivity and provide a habitat friendly alternative to conventional erosion control shoreline hardening methods.
In May of 2014, Skidaway Island State Park received a Coastal Marshlands Protection Act Permit to construct the living shoreline. The oyster bag portion of the living shoreline was constructed in 2015. The living shoreline is approximately 110’ long, and approximately 2,000 oyster bags were placed to stabilize the eroding bank. In February of 2017, Coastal Wildscapes partnered with the Park and GA DNR Coastal Resources Division and GA DNR Wildlife Resources Division to complete the project by planting native vegetation on the upland portion of the bank. Coastal Wildscapes provided/donated native plantings of Borrichia frutescens and Spartina patens that were planted along the upland to help stabilize the bank and alleviate upland stormwater runoff. An Americorps NCCC team that GA DNR CRD and WRD were awarded helped with the bulk of the planting work.
Before upland planting
3 months after upland Planting
Planting Day with an AmeriCorps NCCC team - Feb. 2017