Natural Breaches Across South Shore:

The late fall storm that began on Sunday, December 17th, brought rain and wind through Monday. The pounding waves continued into mid-week, overwashing the barrier beach and flowing into south-facing ponds.

Long Cove Pond, West Tisbury, MA

Long Cove Pond, a freshwater ecosystem was opened to the Atlantic Ocean during a December storm.

At least three natural breaches have been confirmed along the south shore at Chilmark Pond, Tisbury Great Pond, and Long Cove Pond. Both Chilmark and Tisbury Great Pond are brackish ecosystems that are cut to the Atlantic Ocean several times per year. Long Cove Pond, located within the Long Point Wildlife Refuge is a freshwater ecosystem. There have been reports of fish kills and dead tadpoles, likely a result of the sudden influx of seawater, shocking these freshwater species.

Chilmark Pond, Chilmark, MA

The barrier beach of Edgartown Great Pond remains intact, but the strong storm brought over a foot of water into the Pond through a combination of precipitation and overwash. Edgartown Shellfish Constable, Rob Morrison, reports that the Town of Edgartown plans to cut Edgartown Great Pond to the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday, December 23rd, 2023.

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