Project Location: City of Marinette, Marinette County, Wisconsin
Menekaunee Harbor is a 13-acre natural embayment of the Menominee River. It is included within the boundaries of the Lower Menominee River Area of Concern (AOC) by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). The Lower Menominee River AOC is one of 43 in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River Basin. Pollutants contained within the harbor were caused by years of upstream, heavy-industrial manufacturing practices and non-point pollutant storm water run-off. These pollutants contribute to impairments, such as restrictions on fish and wildlife consumption and loss of fish and wildlife habitat, within the AOC.
The ecological restoration of Menekaunee Harbor restored native vegetation and habitat to a degraded wetland complex. Project objectives were:
• Restore habitats for use by invertebrates and native fish species that historically utilize the harbor, such as walleye, yellow perch, muskellunge, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, northern pike, and bluegill.
• Establish healthy and diverse native vegetation communities.
• Restore wetland and upland habitat for use by invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles, mammals and birds.
This project also presents opportunities for public outreach, education, recreation, beautification, and connectivity with other nearby restoration projects. As a result, the Menekaunee Harbor Ecological Restoration project will also increase wetland functional values significantly.