The Woodbridge River is a 5-mile long tributary of the Arthur Kill. Tidal salt marshes were historically prevalent along the river but many areas have been channelized or filled in for development. To compensate for natural resource injuries caused by the B.T. Nautilus and Exxon Bayway oil spills, the NY/NJ Harbor Oil Spill Restoration Committee conducted a salt marsh restoration project to increase nursery and forage habitat for fish and wildlife in the Woodbridge River and Arthur Kill Estuary.
The project restored and enhanced approximately 17.5 acres of degraded tidal marsh that was diked, filled, and colonized by common reeds (Phragmites). The existing berms and fill were removed, and the wetland was regraded to lower the marsh elevation. Tidal creeks were reconstructed to restore the natural hydrology of the marsh and native salt marsh plants, including smooth cordgrass and salt hay, were planted. Herbivory fencing was temporarily installed to reduce predation from Canada geese until the new plants became established. To enhance the recreational and interpretive opportunities in the marsh, a boardwalk, viewing platform, and educational signage were installed. Post-restoration monitoring found that the reduction of standing water and improvements to juvenile fish habitat had also led to a decrease in mosquito populations around the marsh.
Restoration Land Ownership
County or Municipal
Parties Implementing Restoration
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection; Township of Woodbridge, NJ; US Army Corps of Engineers
DOI Project Representatives
Fish and Wildlife Service