Thursday, July 30, 2009

Blind Pass Dredging Project

The talk of the island, is the nearing completion of the Blind Pass Restoration Project. Some old bridge timber pilings were found in the channel and those have to be removed and finish the remaining dredging. If the weather cooperates and things go as planned, they may be removing the remaining sheetpile wall which will open the pass. They are estimating August 1. However, the forecasted chance of storms this weekend could be a problem.

The temperature today reached 93, but there was some wind from the east that seemed to help make it a little more comfortable. Early this evening we drove out to Blind Pass to take a look around.

Late this evening there was a lot of thunder and plenty of clouds, but we only got a few drops of rain. The cooler wind did cool things off though. It's now a pleasant 78 degrees. :-)

Best viewed in HD on YouTube by clicking on the screen below.

If you enlarge the photo below, by clicking on it, you should be able to see way over to where there was a crowd of people at the pipe. It actually looked like someone had set up camp there, with a canopy, chairs etc. Great shells including Junonias have been reported to come flying out of that pipe. A number of people have carried a lot of shells away, with junonias and cones among them. Most of the shells I saw, had broken places on them. I've stood there myself on several occasions and on a hot day, it just isn't worth it to me. Before I lived here, I would probably have stayed out there with the best of them, just hoping something good would land at my feet. :-) I think curiosity of what may be there keeps people coming back. I also refuse to race with anyone to get to a shell first. It's more my nature to step back and say, "that's ok, you can have it." I think there will always be another one somewhere, just waiting for me to find it.

On the Captiva side of Blind Pass, there were small shells scattered, left by the receding tide.

These are the few shells that I picked up. A couple of the biggest Kitten Paws I've seen, a few colorful tiny Scallops, a little Drill, a Cerinth, and a few pretty Jingles. It doesn't take much to make me happy. :-)

After the sheetpile wall is removed and the pass is opened, some infilling is expected to occur. Lee County may authorize additional dredging in the Gulf, which could continue until October.

Another interesting project connected to the Blind Pass Restoration, is a study supported by funds from a Florida Sea Grant, being conducted by Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation's Marine Laboratory in conjunction with the Civil Air Patrol.

Seagrass beds in the area between Blind Pass and Redfish Pass are being mapped prior to and after the opening of Blind Pass. This is done through aerial remote sensing and from staff actually visiting each seagrass bed to take samples.

Seagrasses have an important role in the estuary. Marine animals live there for all or part of their lives relying on the seagrasses to provide food and protection from predators. This project will monitor the current condition of the seagrasses and determine the course of future actions.


Grammy said...

Thanks for stopping by. Your photos and videos are wonderful.

Kathi said...

Thanks for this very interesting post! Love the little shells you brought home.

I'm sitting here looking at a filled glass lamp that I made years ago. It's filled with a special collection of beautiful shells. I see a junonia, some beautiful scallops, worm shells, olive shells and even a star fish or two. These shells were all collected by my mother or me. I see a starfish and some coral too! Anytime I want to be at the beach, I can look at my lamp! Hope you have a beautiful day! Wish I was there! :)

Anonymous said...

I always enjoy your blog. Thanks!