Healthy Coastal Ecosystems

snowy egret, Baker Cove marsh
Snowy Egret (Egretta thula), Baker's Cove (Photo credit: Nancy Balcom)

Long Island Sound is an estuary with almost the entire state of Connecticut within its watershed. Wise use and conservation of our coastal and inland resources is critical to the health of Long Island Sound. The Connecticut Sea Grant Extension Program supports management efforts to conserve and protect ecosystems, habitats and living resources within Connecticut and the northeastern United States. Support of management efforts includes conducting research, education and outreach in coastal land use and community planning, habitat restoration and enhancement and water quality. Fostering collaborative partnerships with federal, state, and local municipal agencies as well as conservation groups is key to coastal resource management in Connecticut.

Living Shorelines

In Connecticut, the term "living shoreline" is used to mean a shoreline erosion control management practice which also restores, enhances, maintains or creates natural coastal or riparian habitat, functions and processes. Coastal and riparian habitats include but are not limited to intertidal flats, tidal marsh, beach/dune systems, and bluffs. Living shorelines may include structural features that are combined with natural components to attenuate wave energy and currents.

Watch video presentations of our recent Living Shorelines Workshop with UCONN CLEAR here

Shoreline Homeowners: Try this new tool to learn how to beautify your coastal property by planting the right in the right place, while reducing erosion. Click here for more information on why it is important to plant coastal riparian corridors?


Additional Resources

  • Long Island Sound Blue Plan and Blue Plan Map Viewer: The LIS Blue plan is an inventory and spatial plan of the natural resources and human uses of Connecticut's Long Island Sound so as to guide future use of the area's waters and submerged lands.
  • Connecticut Eco Environmental Conditions Online: Natural Resource information and imagery for planning, management, education and research
  • Connecticut Shoreline Change Analysis: The Connecticut Shoreline Change Project analyzes how the Connecticut shoreline has changed between the late 1800’s and 2006 through loss (erosion) and gain (accretion) over time.
  • CT Eco Coastal Hazards Map Viewer: for the Shoreline Change Analysis maps as well as other information on coastal hazards.
  • NEMO website: CT Sea Grant collaborates with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Connecticut Cooperative Extension System and is part of the Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials ("NEMO") team. NEMO provides training and information to help officials, commission members, and community leaders make well-informed decisions regarding development, land-use patterns and non-point pollution control in their coastal towns.



The Dodge Paddock preserve in Stonington is an example of a site where a living shoreline was created to make it more resilient to flooding and severe storms.

Connecticut Sea Grant seeking applicants for 3 positions

CT Sea Grant is excited to share openings for three extension positions. Applicants are being sought for: extension educator-nature-based approaches to resilience; sustainable and resilient communities assistant extension educator; and Long Island Sound outreach coordinator.

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