The Lacustrine Refuge is a wetland restoration project located in Wildwood Lakefront State Park in the Euclid Creek Watershed on the Main Branch of Euclid Creek, a tributary to Lake Erie that is heavily urbanized and affected by urban runoff and habitat degradation in the city of Cleveland. The Cuyahoga Soil and Water Conservation District applied for and was awarded $1,396,050 from the US EPA through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) to fund the Lacustrine Refuge project.
An estuary, or lacustuary in freshwater systems, provides habitat for nearshore fish and typically consists of wetlands. Today, the Euclid Creek estuarine zone has been modified for a public park and marina, but opportunity exists to restore some of the natural estuary function.
The Lacustrine Refuge project will restore three acres of urban coastal wetlands and restore 1,100 linear feet of shoreline habitat to serve as a fish habitat refuge and nursery for the urban coastal estuary zone. In addition, eroding banks in the park will be stabilized and invasive plants replaced with native plants to attract more birds and amphibians to the area.
The Lacustrine Refuge project provides a rare opportunity for nearby residents of Cleveland and Euclid to connect with nature and to experience native plant species long displaced from our region and to enjoy wildlife species which have disappeared. Keep updated on this exciting project by checking the Euclid Creek website at http://www.cuyahogaswcd.org/EuclidCreekFiles/EC_LacustrineRefuge.htm.