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Paddle for the Edge 

2017 Collection dates are june 17 to july 5

register now for one of the following training sessions

You must attend a training session before submitting any data, unless you completed training in 2016.

June 5 from 6:00-8:00 p.m., Ocean County Library, Toms River Branch (in the Green Room)
101 Washington Street, Toms River, NJ 08753
Click HERE to register.

June 6 from 6:00-8:00 p.m., Tuckerton Seaport (in the Hunting Shanty)
120 West Main Street, Tuckerton, NJ 08087
Click HERE to register.

June 7 from 6:00-8:00 p.m., Ocean County Library, Stafford Branch
129 North Main Street, Manahawkin, NJ 08050
Click HERE to register.

June 10 from 10 a.m. to Noon, Tuckerton Seaport (in the Hunting Shanty)
120 West Main Street, Tuckerton, NJ 08087
Click HERE to register.

If you have any questions or your preferred training session is full, please email Paddle4TheEdge@gmail.com.

Thank you to all the citizen science volunteers who participated in the 2016 Paddle for the Edge survey.  Email Paddle4TheEdge@gmail.com to get on the contact list for information about the 2017 training sessions.

Volunteers must attend a training session prior to data collection. Click here to see the 2016 Paddle for the Edge Training Manual.

About the Survey

In 2015, the Barnegat Bay Partnership (BBP) launched the first Paddle for the Edge event.  Paddle for the Edge is a data collection event driven by volunteer kayakers, canoeists, and stand-up paddle boarders.  In 2015 and 2016, volunteers paddled a total of 50 miles of shoreline and collected more than 1,800 datapoints with their smartphones, while enjoying a great time out on the water!

We are continuing our efforts to survey the Barnegat Bay's shoreline in 2017.  If you are interested in participating, please sign up for one of the training sessions above.

Why DO we want your help describing Barnegat bay's shorelines?

Land and water interact at the edge, sometimes dramatically (think Superstorm Sandy!). The bay’s shorelines are dynamic habitats, sometimes growing and sometimes eroding. Each shoreline is different, with the erosional (washing away) and accretional (trapping and accumulating) processes affected not only by physical forces (storm waves, boat wakes) but also by the presence of living species (mussels, plants).

The BBP’s survey includes various shoreline features and key biotic indicators, which help to assess conditions and identify what processes are impacting the bay’s shorelines. The indicators cover a range of processes, such as recreational use, shellfish growth, water quality, erosion and accretion, built structures, and plant and animal composition. 

The data collected will help us monitor these critical bay shorelines and assist planners and resource managers in many ways — providing information about flooding and storm impacts, predicting how shorelines may react to sea-level rise, identifying restoration areas, and evaluating the recreational, habitat, and commercial value of our estuaries.

Check out the interactive map below to see where our volunteers surveyed in 2015 and 2016! Don't see any points near you?  Sign up to help us survey in 2017!

If you have any questions, please email Paddle4TheEdge@gmail.com.

If you have any questions, please e-mail Paddle4TheEdge@gmail.com.

Frequently asked questions

1. I participated last year, do I still need to go through training this year?

No. If you attended training in 2016, you do not need to attend training again this year as all of the question and the APP are the same. However, if you attended training in 2015 but not 2016, you must attend one of the 4 training sessions listed at the top of this page. Thanks to the feedback from our volunteers, we made some big changes after the 2015 survey season. Therefore, we are asking those who participated only in 2015 to come to training again this year. 

2. I don't have a smart phone, can I still participate?

YES! If you do not have a smart phone, you can still help by using handwritten data sheets.  You will need a camera and some way of getting GPS coordinates (some cameras have a GPS built in or you can use a handheld GPS). 

3. What if I don't have my own kayak?

You will need to have a kayak, canoe, or stand-up paddle board in order to participate in Paddle For the Edge. If you do not have your own, or have one to borrow, there are several retailers in the area that rent out kayaks and canoes. 

4. I'm confused about the dates, when do I have to go out?

After attending one of the training sessions, you will be assigned a section of shoreline to paddle during the collection dates. The 2017 collection dates are June 17th through July 5th. At any time during this 19-day period you may go out and collect data points. You may go out more than once, after work, on the weekends, or whenever you have free time to enjoy paddling. There is no required day, as long as your section of shoreline is complete by July 5th.

5. I can't transport my kayak, do I get to choose where I kayak?

We understand if you don't have the means to transport your kayak across the watershed. Please let us know at training if you need to kayak in a specific area. We will make every effort to assign you to an area near where you request. However, please have an open mind, it will take a lot of paddling to survey the entire bay! Lots of our volunteers last year were excited to discover new places to kayak!

If you have concerns or questions that are not listed here, they may be addressed during the training sessions or you can email Paddle4TheEdge@gmail.com at any time.