Maine has received $2.3 million in U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service grants to restore and protect coastal wetlands.

The money was awarded to the Maine Department of Inland fisheries for three projects in Harpswell, the Pleasant River estuary in Washington County and Maquoit Bay in Brunswick.

The Harpswell project will permanently protect two parcels totaling 86.9 acres and 1,883 feet of shoreline in Basin and Curtis coves. The federal grant of $603,000 must be matched by $283,000 from state, local or private sources. The coves provide significant habitat for birds and shellfish. Both parcels are on the market and could be developed for residential use.

The Pleasant River project will protect 170 acres and 6,200 feet of shoreline around Long and Seal coves. The federal grant will cover $962,000 of the $1.4 million project.

The Maquoit Bay project will preserve 237 acres and 1,507 feet of shoreline on the Henshaw parcel in Brunswick, adding to 440 abutting acres already in conservation. The area is home to bald eagles, peregrine falcons, piping plovers, roseate terns and red knots.

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