The nor'easters that have battered Plum Island have done more than damage homes and leave debris in the roads.
The dunes at the beaches of the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge have been battered causing concern as piping plovers migrate to the sand for the summer.
"I expect the plover population to be down at Parker River for the next year or two," said Bill Peterson, refuge manager.
Plovers have been labled as a "threatened" species since 1986 and Plum Island is where they mate to grow the population.
The storms have narrowed their habit creating cliffs along the water.
That gives them fewer places to nest and hide when predators go after their young.
"It's disappointing," said Peterson. "I love to see the plover numbers increase every year, but this is a natural part of that process."
The plover population at the refuge hit a record high last year when 48 pairs of plovers made it to the island.
That number may remain a record for the next few years as the beach naturally heals.