Friends of Dyke Marsh
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Friends of Dyke Marsh is a volunteer group dedicated to preserving, restoring and enhancing Dyke Marsh, a freshwater tidal marsh in Fairfax County on the Potomac River just south of Alexandria, Virginia. The Dyke Marsh Wildlife Preserve is administered by the National Park Service.
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International Attention to Dyke MarshOn April 14, 2015, FODM and the National Park Service led a group of Iraqi officials and scientists on a walking tour of Dyke Marsh. FODM is honored to have had these visitors.
FODM president Glenda Booth has written an article that was published in the April 22, 2015 Mount Vernon Voice newspaper. Click here to view the photos and read the entire article.
Dyke Marsh is "Greening Up"
Pickerelweed (Pontederia cordata) is common in Dyke Marsh. Clusters of violet-blue flowers grow atop large spikes, attracting bees and butterflies. Photos by Glenda Booth.
Sediment Pollution is Fouling DM West
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says that sediment "degrades the quality of water for drinking, wildlife and the land . . . prevents animals from seeing food . . . prevents natural vegetation from growing . . . disrupts the natural food chain by destroying the habitat where the smallest stream organisms live and causing massive declines in fish populations. . . and can clog fish gills, affect fish egg and larvae development . . . . ," among other harms.
Fairfax County officials maintain that the major sources of the sediment are two highly degraded and unstable stormwater outfalls in Mount Vernon District Park, uphill from and west of Dyke Marsh and west of Fort Hunt Road. Fortunately, the county is designing a stabilization project, but project managers say there is no funding to actually do the construction.
Given the increasing frequency and severity of storms and degradation underway, the Friends of Dyke Marsh have asked the county to expedite this project. Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bulova has said that the county will apply for a grant to fund the project.
FODM hopes others will weigh in with county officials.
Nature's Free Services
Nature provides free services, from filtering water pollutants to providing medicines. You can read all about it in this article by FODM President Glenda Booth in Virginia Wildlife magazine.
Save These Dates - Forests and Phenology
Here is a brief preview of upcoming FODM meetings:
What Is a Healthy Forest?
Join us on September 16, 7:30 p.m., when Joe Marx will discuss what a healthy mid-Atlantic forest might look like, whether pre-settlement forests were in fact healthy and what chance such a forest would have in our era of invasive aliens and global warming.
Dyke Marsh Restoration, Plan and Funds Available - Time to Get Going
Funding is available to complete around 80 percent of the plan. On October 25, 2013, Secretary Jewell came to the Dyke Marsh Wildlife Preserve and announced the award of $24.9 million grant from Interior for restoration.
The science is done. The plan is in place. The funds are available. It's time for NPS to get moving. In this document, we outline why Dyke Marsh is unstable and could be gone in 20-30 years, as documented by the landmark 2010 U.S. Geological Survey study. We also provide reasons for restoration and an example of how the serious loss of habitat has likely been a factor in the declining numbers of the marsh wren. FODM appreciates the talented graphics work by Amy O'Donnell who designed this brochure.
Sunday Morning Bird Walks
The weekly Sunday morning bird walks are held every Sunday all year. Meet at 8 a.m. in the south parking lot of the Belle Haven picnic area. Walks are led by experienced birders and all are welcome.
Friends of Dyke Marsh, Inc. is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.