Mavillette Marsh from the New Bridge
A new bridge and so an ecological change – and not for the better!
A very concerning development in the marsh and estuary at Mavillette, across the John Doucette Road from the Provincial Park near Cape St. Mary’s.
A new bridge was constructed at the mouth of the stream that empties out of the marsh to the north and east of the beach Park. A new bridge, which I'm sure was seen as a rather simple job - but this bridge has a much wider opening then the old bridge.
As a result, sand is now being carried off the beach and is being deposited inland, shallowing the marsh stream in its lower reaches, but causing flooding well upstream as the water is much more constricted by the deposits of sand.
This is the kind of thing that is quite unintended, but which can have major impacts. Given that we face dramatic changes in sea levels due to climate change, we have to see how even what are thought of as minor changes, like a new bridge, can have major consequences. I fished this system as a kid, and can tell you there are massive changes as a result of the construction. Those changes aren’t just related to fish and the direct impact of water flow, this will also impact the waterfowl and other bird species in the marsh and surrounding area.
The image is of the marsh, taken from the deck of the new bridge, looking inland to the marsh. Note the large quantity of sand in the foreground, but also note the narrowing of the stream, and also the sand in the marsh itself, most noticeable in the image back left, but also viewable in the back right.
An environmental mess, that teaches us – there is no such thing as a simple change.