A recent NCCOS-sponsored publication compared the density and diversity of fish and blue crabs via weekly sampling along a riprap-sill (living) shoreline, a riprap (hardened) shoreline, and a shoreline fringed with smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) marsh (natural) in the Delaware Coastal Bays. In measuring overall fish density and diversity, riprap-sill was more similar to natural shoreline than the traditional riprap shoreline. Several species, including the Atlantic silverside, silver perch, and bay anchovy, had significantly greater densities at the riprap-sill shoreline than along the riprap one, and these densities did not differ from the natural shoreline. No species had significantly greater densities along the riprap shoreline than along either the smooth cordgrass or the riprap-sill shoreline.
Original article: Living Shorelines Provide Better Fish Habitats