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3.4 Loss of Shellfish Habitat

The Gulf The DMF Shellfish Status Report of July 2000 indicates that shellfishing in the area is prohibited (MA DMF 2000 and Appendix G, Table G3).

Cohasset Harbor/Cohasset Cove The DMF Shellfish Status Report of July 2000 indicates that .63 square miles of this harbor is approved for shellfishing and the following areas totaling .07 square miles are prohibited: Sandy Cove,

Whales Cove, and the Briggs Harbor system (Churchill 2003a, in DEP, 2006). Potential pollution sources identified by DMF in Sandy Cove include a pipe draining Treat Pond which is contributing elevated bacteria. The Cohasset Board of Health conducted a targeted investigation of the pond’s influence on pollution of Sandy Cove and the results indicate that the pond is not a great source of

pollution and that any pollution from the pond to the beach quickly dissipates.

Potential pollution

sources to Whales Cove include stormdrains. Unknown sources contribute to the Briggs Harbor system (Churchill 1994 and 2005a) but fertilizer draining from Hatherly Gulf Course may promote bacteria growth.

Scituate Harbor The DMF Shellfish Status Report of July 2000 indicates that harvesting in this area is prohibited (DEP Water Quality Assessment, Appendix G). The area is prohibited due to bad water quality and lack of a current sanitary survey (Churchill 2000a). Based on the DMF shellfish growing area status, this habitat is impaired presumably because of elevated fecal coliform bacteria.

Habitat Protection Recommended Actions

Watershed-wide recommendations

¾ Prevent NHESP Priority Habitat from being impacted by adopting local zoning bylaws that exclude or minimize building in these areas.

¾ Create inter-town committees to inventory dams, identify related flooding issues and prioritize dams for removal or repair with fish passage where appropriate.

¾ Conduct feasibility study for restoring fish passage and prioritize these projects in each watershed.

¾ Identify property owners along rivers and tributaries willing to protect land and propose projects to CPC and partner with land trusts.

¾ Develop an “Adopt a Fish Run” program that will mobilize community support for stewardship of herring runs.

¾ Hire Natural Resources Director in each town.

¾ Devise a plan to control/manage the spread of invasive species and restore native species where possible.

¾ Evaluate the feasibility of removing the Hunter’s Pond dam in order to substantially increasing the amount of smelt spawning habitat and improve river herring passage in this subwatershed. Alternatively, repair mill sluice and culvert under mill to regulate pond levels 1-16 South Coastal Watershed Action Plan 9/12/2006 Watershed Action Alliance

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