Dickinson Bay Islands Restoration Project: Implementing the Plan
Baker, William B. (Bill), Jr.
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In 1934, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers constructed three islands in Dickinson Bay with dredged material from the Dickinson Channel Project. For 65 years these islands provided erosion protection for lands associated with the Texas Nature Conservancy's Texas City Attwater Prairie Chicken Preserve and served as critical nesting habitat for a host of colonial waterbird species (Galloway, personal communication). Subsidence and long-term erosion, exacerbated by a series of tropical storms in the 1990's, resulted in the loss of all three islands, thus eliminating their ecological benefits. In addition to the loss of critical bird nesting habitat, significant intertidal marsh losses have also occurred in the Dickinson Bay complex during the last four decades..... Project goals are to strategically construct three engineered islands of various sizes, 6, 14, and 9 acres respectively. Each island will have multiple ecological components including intertidal marsh restoration, colonial waterbird nesting habitat, heron/egret rookery habitat, oyster reef construction, erosion control, and water quality improvements. Educational and recreational components are also included in the restoration plan.