The Barnegat Bay Islands Working Group (BBIWG) was formed in 2020 by organizations that view island restoration as the key to ensuring the resilience of both the natural habitats and developed communities of the Barnegat Bay. The group is taking a regional and coordinated approach to island restoration. The long-term goal of the BBIWG is to manage bay islands as a system and pursue a variety of habitat enhancement and restoration projects to address multiple needs.
In 2020, field teams from the Barnegat Bay Partnership and the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge used the Mid-Atlantic Tidal Wetlands Rapid Assessment Method to determine current conditions on 52 islands from Bay Head to Little Egg Harbor. This data will be integrated into an island prioritization tool, which will help restoration practitioners identify islands in the bay that would benefit from restoration or protection projects.
With grant funding from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and The Nature Conservancy, the Stockton University Coastal Research Center is developing a tool to support decision-making about island restoration projects. The tool will enable the working group to weigh different parameters to align funding opportunities with potential restoration projects. It will also provide an opportunity to strengthen collaboration among partners (e.g., using sediment from channel maintenance to optimize available funding).
BBIWG Member Organizations
Barnegat Bay Partnership
(contact: Martha Maxwell-Doyle at [email protected])
Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve
Long Beach Township
Monmouth University Urban Coast Institute
National Marine Fisheries Service
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
New Jersey Department of Transportation – Maritime Resources
Ocean County Soil Conservation District
Save Barnegat Bay
Stockton University Coastal Research Center
The Mordecai Land Trust
The Nature Conservancy
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Philadelphia District
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 2
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge (contact: Virginia Rettig at [email protected])
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – NJ Field Office