CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) — Improving the environment for plants and animals is just one of the goals of a group trying to make big changes at the Carolina Beach lake.
In a three-phase project, they will be restoring about 300 feet of shoreline to improve the wildlife habitat on the south side of the lake. Madison Ohmen with the N.C. Wildlife Federation (NCWF) says the native planting will help improve the water and soil quality of the lake, and provide habitat for birds, turtles, pollinators and more.
“We will be installing some native plants along that southern shore,” Ohmen said. “We will also be installing some coir which will help with erosion control.”
Coir is a coconut fiber fabric netting, typically used to manage storm water, but it can also hold water to help establish seedlings in their new habitat. It’s also resistant to pests, so environmentalists say it’s a good choice to help the seedlings grow around the lake.
Several groups have partnered to bring this project to life. The NCWF, in conjunction with the Plastic Ocean Project, will supply native plants and some habitat consulting. The N.C. Cooperative Extension Service provides expertise on plant selection and coir installation. The Cape Fear River Watch has supplied volunteers and ideas to help formulate plans and the project is endorsed by the N.C. Sea Grant.
“It’s potentially a 3-phase project,” Ohmen says. “The first phase will be completed on October 17th with the coir installation.” The second phase includes plantings which are scheduled to be installed December 5, and if necessary, some drip irrigation would be installed in the spring.
Some grant money is available from the NCWF to purchase native plants, but a Facebook fundraiser has been established to raise $3,600 to pay for the rest of the project.
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