Skip to main content

Little Beaver Island

Little Beaver Island is making the Upper Niagara River look good.

Did you know that NYS has over 180 State Parks? Beaver Island State Park is a staple close to home for people who live in WNY. Families visit for beach days, employers host work picnics, and kayakers explore every summer during Paddles Up! With all of the visitors to this Grand Island park, it’s no surprise that the shorelines needed some love.

NYS Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation
Fish and Wildlife Habitat Enhancement and Restoration Fund
Ecological Standing Committee
Anchor QEA
LDC Construction, Inc.
The Place

Little Beaver Island is where the Niagara River meets the edge of the park.

The shoreline was actively eroding into the mighty Niagara River due to large amounts of ice in the winter and wave action year round. An eroding shoreline negatively impacts wildlife and water quality, so Waterkeeper and partners created a plan to improve Little Beaver Island.

Shoreline Erosion

The land at the water’s edge gradually changes and gets washed away.


The banks were steep and eroding with low-quality vegetation.

During Establishment

Softened slopes with native vegetation.


Softened slopes with growing native vegetation.

The Project

Three Barrier Rock Reefs were installed in the water to protect the eroding banks.

The calm water environments created between the Barrier Rock Reefs and the new shoreline fosters aquatic plant species and provides habitat for fish and wildlife. On the reefs, there is a tern nesting area to encourage terns to stay in the area and use Little Beaver Island as their home.

Reclaimed logs from the site were installed in the water to add more nutrients and habitat to the water. Additional fish habitat and native mussel habitat were installed, as well as a  habitat cove and a wildlife corridor.

Barrier Rock Reef

A ridge of jagged rock just above the surface of the water

Tern Nest

A home to seabirds. Over 19 different species of gulls have been recorded on the Niagara River!

90% of all lake and river life is born, raised, or fed along the shorelines of water systems.


Steep slopes actively eroding with no vegetation.

During Establishment

Softened slopes in-water habitat features.


Softened slopes in-water habitat features.

Would you like to support projects like Little Beaver Island? Donate to Waterway Revitalization!