Sunday, 15 March 2015

This beach just got bigger!

ONE of Florida's most popular surfside towns – Cocoa Beach – has added 4.7 million cubic yards of beach sand as part of a $39 million restoration project, just in time for the spring and summer vacations seasons. 

Once a narrow, sandy strip lined with concrete seawalls, the iconic beach known for surfing and space exploration has expanded its shoreline by 160 feet.

‘Get ready to be impressed,’ said Florida's Space Coast executive director Eric Garvey. ‘Our beach improvement programme has dramatically enhanced the beach experience here, from surfing to sand-castle building to soaking in the sun.’

Beach restoration on Florida's Space Coast began as an effort to protect the 72-mile-long coastline from threats posed by erosion and storms. 

Today, the wider beach with natural sand dunes is not only successful at preventing storm damage to coastline development, but also creates healthy habitats for wildlife and tourist recreation. 

Seen,left, is a Great Blue Heron sunning itself in the Thousand Islands area of cocoa beach.

The project took a sustainable approach to restoring the beaches than what had been done on other Florida coasts. By using sand instead of seawalls, storm protection was improved for residents and businesses, and minimized the impacts on wildlife habitats. 

Florida's Space Coast is considered by biologists to be the most important nesting area for loggerhead sea turtles in the Western hemisphere. 

The newly restored, wide and sandy beaches provide ideal nesting habitats for these turtles.

Go Holiday news :

Picture Credit: "Surfing at Cocoa Beach, Florida" by Leonard J. DeFrancisci via Wikimedia Commons; "Great Blue Heron sunning" by Robwaterman (Own work) via Wikimedia Commons; "Baby turtle" by NASA/Troy Cryder via Wikimedia Commons

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