Little St. George Island is a 2,300 acre uninhabited barrier is situated on Florida’s North Gulf Coast, approximately 6-8 miles south-southwest of Apalachicola. An oyster reef breakwater coupled with native vegetation restoration will help to protect the bay shoreline at the historic Marshall House (Field Station) from future erosion. The anticipated completion date of the reef and vegetation planting is spring 2017, with post-construction monitoring of shoreline characteristics and biological communities to follow.
A 500 ft oyster breakwater will be installed on the shoreline in front of the Marshall House. The proposed oyster reefs will be approximately 20x4x2 ft (~4 cubic yards each) and spaced 3 ft apart. The reefs will be composed of bagged, fossilized shell from a local source. This project will also restore approximately 0.2 acres of degraded marsh habitat by planting native species such as Spartina and Juncus spp. Ultimately, this living shoreline will provide long-term protection to the historic Marshall House and create valuable habitat for aquatic and terrestrial species.
Primary coordination and funding for this project is through the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Florida Coastal Office and the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services also assisted by donating oyster shell materials.
- Kim Wren, Stewardship Coordinator