New Hampshire Estuaries Project
South Mill Pond, a tidal pond-like estuary and the study area for the present project, has suffered from a variety of environmental problems as the City of Portsmouth developed, including major watershed changes, combined sewer overflows, runoff from city streets and parking lots, and fill projects. Several years ago, the City initiated a long-term project to re-direct sewage away from the Pond to the City's wastewater treatment plant. In 2001, scientists from the University of New Hampshire joined with the City, eighth grade students and teachers from the Portsmouth Middle School, and local volunteers to construct experimental shellfish reefs and salt marsh habitat in the Pond. Our project was designed to allow sixth grade students to participate in the overall community-wide program of restoring South Mill Pond. It had the dual goal of education and monitoring an ongoing habitat restoration project, and it involved approximately 160 sixth grade students at Portsmouth Middle School.