Sandy's wake leaves shore birds in dire straits

February 2, 2013 by Mary Esch
In this May 13, 2011 file photo, red knots rest at Slaughter Beach in Delaware during their annual migration. Superstorm Sandy damaged beaches along the Delaware Bay where horseshoe crabs lay their eggs every year. As do other migrating shore birds, the red knot depends on those eggs for survival during long seasonal migrations. (AP Photo/The News Journal, Gary Emeigh) NO SALES

Beach and habitat losses attributable to Superstorm Sandy have wildlife groups scrambling to repair the damage by the time spring birds arrive.

The storm washed away sand and vegetation that many species spawn in or call home, or polluted habitats with oil and sewage.

In this Nov. 18, 2012 aerial file photo, two women walk along the shore where new sand is in place along the beach in Seaside Heights, N.J. The Oct. 29 storm ravaged the Mid-Atlantic coast, causing massive damage to dunes, beaches, and salt marshes that are home to a diverse population of birds, wildlife, fish and marine life. (AP Photo/Rich Schultz, File)

Particularly troublesome is damage to the beaches of the Delaware Bay in southern New Jersey. The area is known for birds including the red knot. The stops there to feed on crab eggs on the way from South America to the Arctic.

But Sandy washed away sand that the need to spawn. And repair work will cost millions of dollars.

This Oct. 31, 2012 aerial photo shows storm damage from Superstorm Sandy over the Atlantic Coast in Seaside Heights, N.J. As biologists continue to assess damage caused by Sandy to wildlife and habitats along the Mid-Atlantic coast, conservation groups have launched efforts to repair damage to critical shoreline feeding grounds before migrating birds arrive in the spring. (AP Photo/The New York Times, Doug Mills, Pool)

The money for it and other repairs to help habitats will come from federal and state governments and nonprofit organizations.

Explore further: Research bolsters importance of horseshoe crab spawning for migrating shorebirds

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