Susan Brown is an Outsider Artist who grew up and still resides in Sayville. Here are some of her works:
Scott Gerber got these magnificent shots of The Old Inlet from his 1946 Piper Cub.
Our friends at Peconic Baykeeper are asking the government to start by tackling the biggest and dirtiest septic systems on Long Island. As it stands, Peconic Baykeeper has filed suit against the NYSDEC for failing to include nitrogen limits in permits as required by the Clean Water Act. When presented with Peconic Baykeeper's 200-page petition in September, the NYSDEC came back six months later with a half-page note asking for more information on the 1,338 sites. Given the scale of the problem, we need a much greater sense of urgency if we are to save Long Island.
This project requires a wide cast net. Storm pictures are great but we want to see Fire Island on a good day too. Surfers, surfcasters, sunbathers, cross-dressers, nudists, nature, and nightlife – Fire Island is so many things to so many people; so share your photos, memories and stories.
I captured this moment this morning while helping introduce the STGSB group to a really awesome bunch of Long Island educators seen here with their SCOPE facilitator/STGSB member Vincent & Fire Island Lighthouse volunteer Bob. We're enjoying a fantastic view of the GSB during the lighthouse tour. Worth doing now for the discounted rate ($3) but if you want the "big climb/amazing view" tour (still a bargain at $7), wait till August 1st when construction's done.
Brad Geoghan took some pictures yesterday of Bellport Bay and some just south of The New Inlet. These pictures say it all -- The water is cleaner and clearer than many can remember.
Michael certainly had a busy weekend. He has for us and today's breach report a video and a slide show of the dismantling of the Pattersquash Gunner's Association Club House, which rested on Pelican Island until Sandy and The New Inlet washed her off the island and into Bellport Bay. He also brought his camera down in 4 feet of water to document the clearer, cleaner water that The New Inlet is bringing to Bellport Bay and the Eastern Great South Bay.
Since Sandy, Michael has been steadily chr0ncling what The New Inlet has brought to the eastern Great South Bay - the osprey, the seals, fish of all kinds. We have devoted a whole page to him on this site. He in turn has launched Great South Bay Images. By going through his archives you will see how The New Inlet has evolved, and the changes it has brought. You will also experience the sheer beauty of this rare natural event - a barrier beach and a bay revitalizing through the creation of a new inlet -- and of our Great South Bay itself and its wildlife.
Here then is a slide show of the club's dismantling and removal:
With the twice daily flushing of Bellport Bay from the tides and The New Inlet, we are seeing bay bottom hidden for decades, flounder, bluefish, weakfish. And unlike Shinnecock and Moriches Bay, which don't properly flush, and where nitrogen pollution from septic tanks, lawn fertilizers and farms gathers to feed algal blooms, and with increasing intensity year by year, we have thus far seen NO BROWN TIDES.
Further research via old maps showed that in the 1790's it was referred to as "The New Inlet at South Haven," gaining the name The Old Inlet only after it was closed by two ship wrecks in the 1820s. So what was new is now new again. The bay is renewing itself with the inlet's reopening. Even so, The Army Corps of Engineers continues to press for closure, as to presumably the politicians who continue to ignore science in favor of 'doing something.' It is our hope that this new New Inlet will remain with us, hopefully so long as nature deems it, and will continue to revitalize the Eastern Bay, repairing at least some of the damage we've caused from decades of mismanagement and neglect. We hope that it can buy us enough time to address the many water quality issues on the Long Island mainland that led to the bay's deterioration -- seepage from 100,000+ septic tanks, storm runoff from 2000+ outfall pipes that wash into our streams and into our bays 115 different pesticides, lawn fertilizer, the destruction of marshes and eelgrass beds.
Last month, Jim Tripp of the The Environmental Defense Fund drafted a letter addressed to The Department of Interior, The National Parks Service, The Fire Island National Seashore, The Army Corps of Engineers, and The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. In it, he argues that The Breach Contingency Plan, adopted in 1996, extended in 2001 for another five years, then on the books but overdue for revision since 2007, must be interpreted in light of previous documents pertaining to the protection of wilderness areas, and that before any action is taken to close The Old Inlet, the following would by law have to happen:
Here's an amazing shot of the breach as it was being formed during Hurricane Sandy, photographed by our own Michael Busch. Those aren't dunes behind the Pattersquash club house -- those are waves!
The Breach / New Inlet Forming During Hurricane Sandy
The breach, although not static, is relatively stable and there is a likelihood that closure by natural processes may occur in the future.
Water levels and tidal amplitude in eastern Great South Bay returned to normal soon after Hurricane Sandy and have remained in the normal range.
Water exchange between the ocean and bay has increased in eastern Great South Bay.
Extensive shoaling has occurred within the Great South Bay just north of the breach.