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Browse History: Choptank River (2010)

Chesapeake Bay - Reporting Region Summary:

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Bay Health Index
Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon
Choptank River: 2010

Poor ecosystem health. This region had the greatest increase in water clarity scores, but all biotic indicators declined. Overall score remained steady.
  • Water quality: Both dissolved oxygen and water clarity scores improved (by 6% and 13%, respectively) in 2010, with dissolved oxygen scoring its highest since 1988. However, chlorophyll a scores dropped by 12% from 2009.
  • Biotic indicators: The scores of all three biotic indicators declined in 2010. Phytoplankton community declined to 14% following five previous years of improvement. Aquatic grasses continue to be in very poor condition, and benthic community scores declined slightly, but tend to vary widely from year to year.

Score Legend
Locator Map
  Index/Indicator Score     Index/Indicator Score
Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Chlorophyll a
  Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Aquatic grasses
Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Dissolved oxygen
  Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity
Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Water clarity
  Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Phytoplankton Index of Biotic Integrity
Benthic Index of Biotic Integrity Icon Water Quality Index
  Biotic Index Icon Biotic Index

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Dynamic Conceptual Diagram

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Region Info

The Choptank River watershed drains approximately 795 square miles. Counties included in the watershed include portions of Caroline, Dorchester, Queen Anne's, and Talbot. The Choptank River starts in Delaware and becomes tidal near Greensboro, Maryland. Some of the larger bodies of water include the Choptank, Little Choptank, and Tred Avon Rivers. Almost half of the land in the Choptank watershed is agricultural land, with a third being covered in forest. Cambridge is the largest city in the Choptank River watershed, with a population of 11,000. Other major cities and towns include Easton and Denton. The 2000 census population for the Maryland part of the watershed was 71,000. There are four major wastewater treatment plants in the watershed. Three of the four utilize Best Management Practices. (Based on MD DNR Tributary Strategy Report by Aadland et al., 2007 and updated 2000 land use classifications).

choptank_riverconceptual diagram.png

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