The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) awarded a new coastal resilience grant to the University of Puerto Rico at Aguadilla (UPRAg) in collaboration with the UW-Madison Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture. This is the fourth UPRAg project funded by the NFWF. The current project is titled: Using Mangrove Restoration to Improve Coastal Community Resilience in Puerto Rico and will restore four mangroves that were devastated by the 2017-2018 storms in the western part of the island. The ecological restoration of 59 hectares in the hurricane-destroyed basin mangroves will improve storm protections, resilience and ecosystem services for three coastal communities in Puerto Rico. Robert J. Mayer, UW-Madison alum and professor of biology at UPRAg, is the principal investigator of this grant. Since 2007, he has worked on the ecological restoration of coastal sand dunes on the north coast of Puerto Rico. This is the first of their projects that focuses on mangrove restoration. The UW-Madison team consists of wetland restoration expert David Bart (Co-PI) and UW-Madison Earth Partnership staff Cheryl Bauer-Armstrong, Director (Co-PI) and Maria Moreno, Multicultural Relations Manager. Dr. Bart’s students: Jean Paul González-Crespo, Ph.D. student, and Michael James Caruso, MS candidate.
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