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Factors Affecting Water Quality

As the States implement practices to reduce nutrient and sediment to improve water quality, they want to understand the success of their efforts. The USGS conducts studies on the relation among land change, management practices, and changes in nutrients and sediment. The findings are used to help assess progress toward the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) water-quality goal and make needed adjustments

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Agricultural best management practices can improve water quality and conditions for fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Issue Partners in the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) are implementing best management practices (BMPs) to prevent nutrient and sediment from entering waterways across the Chesapeake watershed and reduce loads to the Bay. In addition to reducing nutrients, CBP partners want to better understand how BMPs can provide additional benefits for addressing toxic contaminants, such as pesticides, hormones...
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Agricultural best management practices can improve water quality and conditions for fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Issue Partners in the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) are implementing best management practices (BMPs) to prevent nutrient and sediment from entering waterways across the Chesapeake watershed and reduce loads to the Bay. In addition to reducing nutrients, CBP partners want to better understand how BMPs can provide additional benefits for addressing toxic contaminants, such as pesticides, hormones...
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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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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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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.
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Greatest Opportunities for Future Nitrogen Reductions to the Chesapeake Bay Watershed are in Developed and Agricultural Areas

Issue: As human population has increased, land-use changes have led to increases in nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) and sediment into the Bay. The excess nutrients cause algal blooms which contribute to water-quality impairments such as low oxygen or hypoxia (dead zones), and poor water clarity in the Chesapeake Bay. Management efforts to improve water quality focus on dissolved oxygen needed...
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Greatest Opportunities for Future Nitrogen Reductions to the Chesapeake Bay Watershed are in Developed and Agricultural Areas

Issue: As human population has increased, land-use changes have led to increases in nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) and sediment into the Bay. The excess nutrients cause algal blooms which contribute to water-quality impairments such as low oxygen or hypoxia (dead zones), and poor water clarity in the Chesapeake Bay. Management efforts to improve water quality focus on dissolved oxygen needed...
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Groundwater Discharge is a Pathway for Phytoestrogen and Herbicide Entry to Streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Groundwater discharge zones are important spawning areas for fish because they provide a thermally stable habitat. Research at three streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with areas of focused groundwater discharge revealed that groundwater also is a source of phytoestrogens and herbicides that could result in fish exposure during sensitive life stages.
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Groundwater Discharge is a Pathway for Phytoestrogen and Herbicide Entry to Streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Groundwater discharge zones are important spawning areas for fish because they provide a thermally stable habitat. Research at three streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with areas of focused groundwater discharge revealed that groundwater also is a source of phytoestrogens and herbicides that could result in fish exposure during sensitive life stages.
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Chesapeake Science Partners Produce Tributary Summaries

Issue The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) partnership is striving to improve water-quality conditions in the Bay and its tidal waters. The partnership needs to understand water-quality conditions in different tributaries to help assess the influence of nutrient-reduction practices and progress toward attaining water-quality standards.
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Chesapeake Science Partners Produce Tributary Summaries

Issue The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) partnership is striving to improve water-quality conditions in the Bay and its tidal waters. The partnership needs to understand water-quality conditions in different tributaries to help assess the influence of nutrient-reduction practices and progress toward attaining water-quality standards.
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New Virus Identified in Melanistic Skin Lesions on Smallmouth Bass from the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Scientists determined the risk factors associated with smallmouth bass melanistic skin lesions on smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna and Potomac Rivers, in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. A new virus, which appears to be a member of an emerging viral family, the Adomaviridae, was identified in the lesions. Questions remain about the full characterization of the virus and the role of environmental...
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New Virus Identified in Melanistic Skin Lesions on Smallmouth Bass from the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Scientists determined the risk factors associated with smallmouth bass melanistic skin lesions on smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna and Potomac Rivers, in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. A new virus, which appears to be a member of an emerging viral family, the Adomaviridae, was identified in the lesions. Questions remain about the full characterization of the virus and the role of environmental...
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Fact Sheet Summarizes Nutrient Trends and Drivers in the Chesapeake Watershed

Issue: Trends in nitrogen and phosphorus, and the complex factors affecting their change, provide important insights into the effectiveness of efforts to reduce nutrients from reaching the tidal waters of the Bay. The nutrient reductions are needed to improve water-quality conditions in the tidal waters for fisheries and submerged aquatic vegetation.
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Fact Sheet Summarizes Nutrient Trends and Drivers in the Chesapeake Watershed

Issue: Trends in nitrogen and phosphorus, and the complex factors affecting their change, provide important insights into the effectiveness of efforts to reduce nutrients from reaching the tidal waters of the Bay. The nutrient reductions are needed to improve water-quality conditions in the tidal waters for fisheries and submerged aquatic vegetation.
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New Review of Sediment Science Informs Choices of Management Actions in the Chesapeake

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) is pursuing restoration efforts to improve habitats and associated water quality for fisheries, both in the watershed and estuary. Excess sediment decreases light in tidal waters for submerged aquatic vegetation, harms oysters, carries contaminants, and impairs stream health throughout the watershed. The CBP is implementing management actions and policies...
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New Review of Sediment Science Informs Choices of Management Actions in the Chesapeake

Issue: The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) is pursuing restoration efforts to improve habitats and associated water quality for fisheries, both in the watershed and estuary. Excess sediment decreases light in tidal waters for submerged aquatic vegetation, harms oysters, carries contaminants, and impairs stream health throughout the watershed. The CBP is implementing management actions and policies...
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Water Quality Monitoring to Inform Conservation Management, Fishing Creek, Clinton County, Pennsylvania

USGS conducted synoptic sampling of major-ion chemistry and the nitrogen and oxygen isotopic composition of nitrate in Fishing Creek during base flow to evaluate the occurrence and distribution of nutrients and to characterize biogeochemical processes.
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Water Quality Monitoring to Inform Conservation Management, Fishing Creek, Clinton County, Pennsylvania

USGS conducted synoptic sampling of major-ion chemistry and the nitrogen and oxygen isotopic composition of nitrate in Fishing Creek during base flow to evaluate the occurrence and distribution of nutrients and to characterize biogeochemical processes.
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