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THMS students lend hand to preserve shoreline habitat

Dozens of Thomas Hunter Middle School seventh graders poured out of buses and into the quiet waterfront neighborhood of Bavon Beach in Mathews on Friday—Earth Day—to learn about habitat restoration and to lend their support to a project that has been more than 15 years in the making.

The project involves construction of three offshore breakwaters, replenishment of sand along the beach, and planting of beach grasses to promote dune development along the shoreline of Mathews County’s southernmost neighborhood.

The students divided into groups and visited three stations—one to learn about the Northeastern Beach Tiger Beetle, the tiny culprit that was one of the reasons the project took so long; a second to learn about the breakwaters and the construction process; and a third to actually take part in the restoration of habitat by planting beach grass.

Sarah Nystrom of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) taught the tiger beetle segment, with Scott Hardaway of...

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