More than $120,000 Awarded From The Quinnipiac River Fund

Work to remove invasive plants, a study of how temperature change affects freshwater crustaceans and research on the impact of microplastics are among the several projects supported by the annual grant awards.

New Haven, CT (Aug. 13, 2021) – The Quinnipiac River Fund at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven has awarded $121,000 in grants to benefit the Quinnipiac River and its surrounding watershed. Eight competitive grants were awarded to organizations working in Greater New Haven.

The grants all support the mission of the fund to improve the environmental quality of the river, New Haven Harbor and the surrounding watershed. Two of the grants are supporting the work of University of New Haven biologists who are studying the effects of pollution and climate change on the river and its habitat. In one, researchers are exploring the impact of microplastics – small plastic pieces less than five millimeters long that can be harmful to the ocean and aquatic life – on fish in the lower Quinnipiac River and in New Haven Harbor. The fund is also supporting a second University of New Haven research project that is examining the affect of temperature change the behavior of crayfish.

University of New Haven biologists study human impact on environment

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Southwest conservation district
The Southwest Conservation District used a grant to purchase weed wrenches for removing invasive plants such as winged euonymus along Wharton Brook.

The Quinnipiac River Fund was established in 1990 as a permanent fund at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, and its grants and distributions are recommended each spring by an Advisory Committee and approved by The Community Foundation’s Board of Directors.

The grants support studies of the water quality and ecology, studies of pollution, public access to the river, land use planning, land acquisition around the river, habitat restoration, advocacy, education, and other relevant projects.

2021 Grant Recipients List

Canal Dock Boathouse, Inc.

to support boating and environmental programming that bring New Haven area residents in contact with New Haven Harbor and Quinnipiac River, highlighting the waterfront’s importance to the community.


Land Use Leadership Alliance (LULA)

to support the initiation of a Quinnipiac River watershed plan.


Quinnipiac University

to support the study of the presence and spatial distribution of industrial pollutants and other water quality parameters along the Quinnipiac River.


River Advocates of South Central Connecticut

to support a coliform bacteria testing program that uses trained volunteers to collect and a professional lab to analyze bacteria in stream and river segments of the Quinnipiac Watershed, and to support advocacy for state and local permits affecting water quality of the Quinnipiac River.


Southwest Conservation District, Inc.

to support reclaiming a floodplain habitat of Wharton Brook from invasive plant species, in partnership with a science class at Lyman Hall High School in Wallingford.


University of New Haven

to support a study that will focus on characterizing the gut microbiomes of estuarine fish in the lower Quinnipiac River and New Haven Harbor, as well as assessing the relationships between environmental conditions, diet, microplastic prevalence, and these microbial communities.


University of New Haven

to support the study of the effects of temperature change on the behavior of freshwater crustaceans in the Quinnipiac River.


Yale University

to support the study of microplastics and macroplastics in the Quinnipiac River and its source waters.


Media Contact:

Matt Higbee
Content and Engagement Manager
The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven