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Fish, Streams, and Water Quality

The Chesapeake Bay watershed supports important recreational and commercial fisheries, but many are declining due to poor water quality, loss of quality habitat and increased invasive species. The USGS science activities are improving the understanding of how restoration and conservation efforts, along with land-use and climate change, are affecting conditions for fish, wildlife, and people.

Filter Total Items: 105

USGS and CBP produce report to enhance Chesapeake Bay and watershed monitoring networks

Issue: In March 2021, the Principals’ Staff Committee (PSC) requested a study and recommendations on how to enhance the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) monitoring networks to improve decision-making for the goals of the Chesapeake Watershed Agreement. The monitoring networks include (1) CBP core networks supported primarily by EPA CBP funding (i.e., Tidal Water Quality, Nontidal Water Quality...
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USGS and CBP produce report to enhance Chesapeake Bay and watershed monitoring networks

Issue: In March 2021, the Principals’ Staff Committee (PSC) requested a study and recommendations on how to enhance the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) monitoring networks to improve decision-making for the goals of the Chesapeake Watershed Agreement. The monitoring networks include (1) CBP core networks supported primarily by EPA CBP funding (i.e., Tidal Water Quality, Nontidal Water Quality...
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USGS calculates loads and trends through 2021 for the nine major rivers entering Chesapeake Bay

Issue: The amount of nutrients and suspended sediment entering the Chesapeake Bay affect water-quality conditions in tidal waters. Excess nutrients contribute to algal blooms that lower the oxygen levels in tidal waters that are important for fish and shellfish. The algal blooms, along with suspended sediment, also decrease visibility in shallow waters for submerged aquatic grasses. The grasses...
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USGS calculates loads and trends through 2021 for the nine major rivers entering Chesapeake Bay

Issue: The amount of nutrients and suspended sediment entering the Chesapeake Bay affect water-quality conditions in tidal waters. Excess nutrients contribute to algal blooms that lower the oxygen levels in tidal waters that are important for fish and shellfish. The algal blooms, along with suspended sediment, also decrease visibility in shallow waters for submerged aquatic grasses. The grasses...
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USGS to revise 2020 nontidal load and trend results

Issue: The USGS is examining data and results of the most recent update of loads and trends from monitoring stations in the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) Nontidal Network (NTN), which contains trends though 2020 and was released in August 2022. During a process to implement a new software package for the next update of NTN data, the USGS discovered some questionable data values. Most of the...
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USGS to revise 2020 nontidal load and trend results

Issue: The USGS is examining data and results of the most recent update of loads and trends from monitoring stations in the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) Nontidal Network (NTN), which contains trends though 2020 and was released in August 2022. During a process to implement a new software package for the next update of NTN data, the USGS discovered some questionable data values. Most of the...
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Enhanced understanding of factors affecting stream condition can improve restoration outcomes

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement has an outcome to improve stream health. Current restoration approaches have led to mixed improvements in stream conditions, indicating that some major stressors and their sources were likely overlooked. Managers could benefit from synthesized information on most reported stressors responsible for aquatic community impairment and their linkages to...
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Enhanced understanding of factors affecting stream condition can improve restoration outcomes

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement has an outcome to improve stream health. Current restoration approaches have led to mixed improvements in stream conditions, indicating that some major stressors and their sources were likely overlooked. Managers could benefit from synthesized information on most reported stressors responsible for aquatic community impairment and their linkages to...
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New study shows importance of streambank erosion and floodplain deposition on sediment, phosphorus, and nitrogen sources and transport in the Chesapeake watershed

Issue: As Chesapeake Bay Program partners work to reduce pollution, knowing sources of sediment, phosphorus, and nitrogen transported to the Bay is critical for effective and efficient management. Streams and their associated floodplains have an important influence on the transport of nutrients and sediment through the Chesapeake watershed and into tidal waters. The USGS is conducting...
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New study shows importance of streambank erosion and floodplain deposition on sediment, phosphorus, and nitrogen sources and transport in the Chesapeake watershed

Issue: As Chesapeake Bay Program partners work to reduce pollution, knowing sources of sediment, phosphorus, and nitrogen transported to the Bay is critical for effective and efficient management. Streams and their associated floodplains have an important influence on the transport of nutrients and sediment through the Chesapeake watershed and into tidal waters. The USGS is conducting...
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Study of stream fishes provides new framework to monitor climate change in the Chesapeake Bay headwaters

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) have identified four goals for actions toward change climate: • address the threats of climate change in all aspects of the partnership’s work; • prioritize communities, working lands, and most vulnerable habitats; • apply the best scientific, modeling, monitoring and planning capabilities; and • connect restoration outcomes with emerging opportunities. A...
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Study of stream fishes provides new framework to monitor climate change in the Chesapeake Bay headwaters

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) have identified four goals for actions toward change climate: • address the threats of climate change in all aspects of the partnership’s work; • prioritize communities, working lands, and most vulnerable habitats; • apply the best scientific, modeling, monitoring and planning capabilities; and • connect restoration outcomes with emerging opportunities. A...
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USGS Part of New Federal Effort to Address Climate Change in the Chesapeake Watershed

Issue: The federal government will work together to implement the Chesapeake Executive Council Directive No. 21-1 Collective Action for Climate Change, recognizing that urgent attention is needed to confront the challenges that a changing climate poses to the Chesapeake Bay region. The Directive emphasizes the importance of the “…resiliency of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, including its living...
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USGS Part of New Federal Effort to Address Climate Change in the Chesapeake Watershed

Issue: The federal government will work together to implement the Chesapeake Executive Council Directive No. 21-1 Collective Action for Climate Change, recognizing that urgent attention is needed to confront the challenges that a changing climate poses to the Chesapeake Bay region. The Directive emphasizes the importance of the “…resiliency of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, including its living...
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USGS Chesapeake Publication Receives National Award for Superior Communication Product

The Award USGS received a 2022 Blue Pencil & Gold Screen Award, in the category of Technical/Statistical Reports, from the National Association of Government Communications (NAGC) for the U.S. Geological Survey Circular titled Nitrogen in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed—A Century of Change, 1950–2050. Each year the NAGC recognizes products that provide excellence in government communications and the...
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USGS Chesapeake Publication Receives National Award for Superior Communication Product

The Award USGS received a 2022 Blue Pencil & Gold Screen Award, in the category of Technical/Statistical Reports, from the National Association of Government Communications (NAGC) for the U.S. Geological Survey Circular titled Nitrogen in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed—A Century of Change, 1950–2050. Each year the NAGC recognizes products that provide excellence in government communications and the...
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Unique 20-year study assesses ecosystem response to different types of stormwater management

Issue: Managing stormwater runoff in developing areas
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Assessing the habitat conditions to support freshwater fisheries in the Chesapeake Watershed

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Program partners are striving to improve habitat conditions for recreational fisheries and other native fishes in the Bay and its watershed. While national fish habitat assessments have been conducted, resource managers need more local information to focus restoration and protection efforts in Chesapeake Bay watershed. Conducting the fish-habitat assessments are...
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Assessing the habitat conditions to support freshwater fisheries in the Chesapeake Watershed

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Program partners are striving to improve habitat conditions for recreational fisheries and other native fishes in the Bay and its watershed. While national fish habitat assessments have been conducted, resource managers need more local information to focus restoration and protection efforts in Chesapeake Bay watershed. Conducting the fish-habitat assessments are...
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Tracking Status and Trends in Seven Key Indicators of River and Stream Condition in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Identifying and tracking the status of, and trends in, stream health within the Chesapeake Bay watershed is essential to understanding the past, present, and future trajectory of the watershed’s resources and ecological condition. A team of USGS ecosystem scientists is meeting this need with an initiative to track the status of, and trends in, key indicators of the health of non-tidal freshwater...
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Tracking Status and Trends in Seven Key Indicators of River and Stream Condition in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Identifying and tracking the status of, and trends in, stream health within the Chesapeake Bay watershed is essential to understanding the past, present, and future trajectory of the watershed’s resources and ecological condition. A team of USGS ecosystem scientists is meeting this need with an initiative to track the status of, and trends in, key indicators of the health of non-tidal freshwater...
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Pennsylvania and the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

USGS provides monitoring, analysis, modeling and research on streams and water quality to better understand the fate and transport of nutrients and sediment to the Susquehanna and other rivers, and their tributaries, and eventually to the Chesapeake Bay. Additional research focuses on emerging contaminants and other stressors that effect human and aquatic life in the watershed and estuary.
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Pennsylvania and the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

USGS provides monitoring, analysis, modeling and research on streams and water quality to better understand the fate and transport of nutrients and sediment to the Susquehanna and other rivers, and their tributaries, and eventually to the Chesapeake Bay. Additional research focuses on emerging contaminants and other stressors that effect human and aquatic life in the watershed and estuary.
Learn More