Oct 27, 2021 | A Day in Photos

After the county’s Sand Shifter finishes a project in Aunt Lydia’s Cove, the pipe is towed over to Harwich. Ken Cirillo photo.

High winds and bad weather can keep commercial boats off the water, which can wreak havoc on business plans and the food supply chain.

That same bad weather can cause permanent problems if the ways to the sea are blocked by shoaling sand. Living in fishing communities it is imperative we protect access to the ocean, which is threatened by Mother Nature, climate change, and sometimes by an onerous permitting process.

The success of our Blue Economy hinges on commercial fishermen getting to work, so we have begun working with towns and Barnstable County to see how we can safeguard these watery thoroughfares.

Check out this gallery to see a recent project and some past work.

Deckhand Andrew Dipietro attaches the pipe to the dredge.


The Sand Shifter in Aunt Lydia’s Cove in April, the sand was put on the beach of Chatham Bars Inn. Ken Cirillo photo.

The county dredge crew is easy to spot on the beach. Rich Randall, a talented mechanic, heads off the beach in Mashpee that afternoon to meet a FedEx truck that was delivering a new cutter head.

The dredged sand from the 1916 Channel is used to rebuild Popponesett’s barrier beach.

Dredge Adminstrator Ken Cirillo recently celebrated his one-year anniversary on the job. He said it was a very busy, but great year.

Dredge Superintendent Jason Bevis smooths out some dredge material in Mashpee. Administrator Ken Cirillo says the success of the program has a lot to do with the great staff.

Deckhands in skiffs move 250-pound anchors so the dredge can “crab” forward. Ken Cirillo photo.

Deckhand Andrew Dipietro pulled up to the newly repaired Cod Fish II on a beautiful October day.

Chatham has purchased its own pipe because of the distance from some dredging spots to the locations where sand is needed to forestall erosion.

The cutterhead. Ken Cirillo photo.

Aerial shot of the dredge in Chatham, a community on the elbow of the Cape whose fishing fleet requires safe ways to the sea.


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