Jamestown, Rhode Island
This project was funded in FY2014 by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Seagrass, a valuable spawning and nursery habitat for many fish and invertebrate species, is declining worldwide, and the waters around Rhode Island are no exception. Seagrass is vulnerable to a number of boating related activities, including the use of traditional chain moorings. Traditional moorings can drag on the seafloor, severely damaging habitat through physical removal of the seagrass shoots. To restore seagrass, the Atlantic Coastal Fish Habitat Partnership worked with partners to replace four traditional moorings with conservation boat moorings. Conservation moorings use a buoyant bungee-like cord to minimize contact with the seafloor, reducing habitat damage.
Please note, the mooring of boats and the establishment of mooring fields in seagrass beds is generally recognized as a significant source of damage to these important ecological communities across their range. As such, the Atlantic Coastal Fish Habitat Partnership only provided support to specific remediation actions at this and other designated project sites, which address historic damage caused by the scouring effects of traditional chain and block-anchor mooring systems. ACFHP does not support installing conservation moorings in healthy seagrass beds.