Virtual New Jersey Shore
All about Sand Dunes at the Jersey Shore

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TOPIC:
Sand Dunes - How and Why we preserve them

What are and dunes and why are they important?

Sand dunes are placed along beaches and are very critical to the survival of barrier islands. Sand Dunes offer the best protection from storms, natural beach errosion, and large pounding waves. Without sand dunes, barrier islands could disappear over a period of time. It is important that people do not walk on the sand dunes. Although they are aesthetically pleasing sand dunes are very delicate constructions. People who disregard this fact are sand dunesą worst enemies.

Dune grass is very important to the preservation of sand dunes. The dune grass roots help keep the dunes intact. The roots of the dune grass plant will extend deep into the dune and help control natural dune erosion. Environmentalists encourage the growth of sand dunes. With regular plantings of dune grass, regular fertilization, and proper placement of snow fences, these three things help promote the growth of sand dunes.

Jetties and Seawalls
Many people think jetties and seawalls are more effective than sand dunes in protecting the shoreline. But they actually encourage the loss of beach sand in many cases. When storm waves crash against sea walls and jetties, sand is carried back into the sea as the water retreats. Jetties and seawalls are not effective on barrier islands, because a barrier island is constantly shifting and is made up of nothing but sand. Jetties and seawalls are used in many Jersey Shore areas. particularly in Northern shore communities. They were used as a last resort where sand dunes have already been permanently destroyed.

What can YOU do to help maintain the dunes at the Jersey Shore?
Obey all signs that restrict access onto sand dunes and walk only on established paths. Donąt allow dogs or animals to run on or dig in a sand dune. Donąt litter. Fully appreciate the value and beauty of sand dunes.


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