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2008 Chesapeake Bay Summer Review Permanent Link

Produced by EcoCheck in collaboration with Chesapeake Bay Program's Tidal Monitoring and Analysis Workgroup.

Several large river flow events during winter and spring were forecast to result in worse than average dissolved oxygen and harmful algal bloom conditions this summer. However, observed summer conditions were not as bad as predicted with dissolved oxygen levels being close to the long-term average and Potomac River harmful algal blooms (Microcystis) were relatively small and of shorter duration. These better than predicted levels may in part be attributed to the relatively dry summer. Despite the average mainstem Bay dissolved oxygen levels, harmful algal blooms and fish kills were reported in many of the Bays tributaries. Here we summarize summer conditions and offer some explanations as to why they may have occurred.

Comprehensive Strategy for Reducing Maryland's Vulnerability to Climate Change, Phase 1: Sea-level rise and coastal storms Permanent Link

A report to the Maryland Commission on Climate Change from the Adaptation and Response Working Group.

This is Chapter 5 of the Climate Action Plan, Governor Martin O'Malley's appointed Maryland Commission on Climate Change report. It makes recommendations to state lawmakers and policy makers to mitigate the effects of sea-level rise and storm by taking action and committing resources to protect Maryland's future economic well-being, environmental heritage, and public safety.

Global Warming and the Free State: Comprehensive Assessment of Climate Change Impacts in Maryland Permanent Link

A report to the Maryland Commission on Climate Change from the Scientific and Technical Working Group. Edited by Donald F. Boesch. Designed and produced by Jane M. Hawkey.

This is Chapter 2 of the Climate Action Plan, Governor Martin O'Malley's appointed Maryland Commission on Climate Change report on the impacts and recommended actions to protect Maryland's property and people from the effects of climate change.

Fine scale patterns of water quality in three regions of Marylands Coastal Bays: assessing nitrogen source in relation to land use Permanent Link

Beckert K, Fertig BM, O'Neil JM, Carruthers TJB, Wazniak C, Sturgis B, Hall M, Jones AB and Dennison WC

Intensive sampling of the Maryland Coastal Bays in May and July of 2007 served to further assess spatial patterns in nutrients, responses of biological indicators, seasons, land use, and nutrient cycling. Trends indicated degraded water quality, high tubidity, increasing total nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations, high natural isotope abundance (δ15N), and low dissolved oxygen. The abundance of crop agriculture and development of the St. Martin River watershed indicates terrestrial sources of poor water quality, especially in upstream reaches, but no such land use connection has been reported for the region of Johnsons Bay. The difference between these two coastal bays may be their flushing and nutrient cycling abilities, in conjunction with adjacent land use.

Linking Monie Bay watershed land use to nitrogen stable isotopes in tissues of the native eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica Permanent Link

Fertig BM, Carruthers TJB and Dennison WC

To develop the native eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica, as a biological indicator of nitrogen source, linkages between stable nitrogen isotopes in its tissues and land use adjacent to deployment stations were assessed. As part of a National Estuarine Research Reserve System Graduate Research Fellowship, this study focused on the Monie Bay component of Chesapeake Bay, MD Research Reserve, which includes Monie Bay and three similar tributary creeks which vary in their surrounding land use. This report provides evidence for a relationship between oyster tissue stable nitrogen isotopes and surround land use, and further suggests both internal and external nitrogen sources relative to the Monie Bay watershed.

Effects of nutrient enrichment in the Nation's estuaries: A decade of change Permanent Link

Bricker S, Longstaff BJ, Dennison WC, Jones AB, Boicourt K, Wicks EC and Woerner JL

National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, Silver Spring, MD

This report provides an assessment of eutrophic conditions for 141 U.S. estuaries. The report was based on data and information provided by scientists and experts from around the country. Results from the assessment show that two-thirds of the estuaries evaluated exhibited moderate to high levels of eutrophication. Report production was a collaborative effort between Suzanne Bricker (NOAA NCCOS), EcoCheck (NOAA-UMCES Partnership) and IAN. More information is available from the NEEA website. You can also access the individual chapters from the NCCOS website.

2007 Chesapeake Bay Hypoxic Volume Forecast Permanent Link

Scavia D

This paper describes the methods used to determine the July hypoxic volume for the Chesapeake Bay mainstem.

Development of an Integrated and Spatially Explicit Index of Chesapeake Bay Health (Bay Habitat Health Index - BHHI) Permanent Link

Williams M, Longstaff BJ, Buchanan C, Llansó R and Bergstrom P

This technical document provides a detailed of the methodology employed in generating the Bay Habitat Health Index used in the Chesapeake Bay Report Card.

Assessment of Coastal Management and Science Needs in South Florida Permanent Link

Dennison WC, Nuttle W and Wicks EC

Resource managers in South Florida recognize that they need to address threats to natural resources by taking action to restore and sustain ecosystems. The attention and resources formerly directed toward basic ecosystem research in South Florida are increasingly directed toward broader goals of a region-wide restoration effort. NOAA Center for Sponsored Coastal Ocean Research (CSCOR) contracted the Integration and Application Network to identify strategic needs for coastal ecosystem science that address the new emphasis on ecosystem restoration in South Florida.

Water quality in four regions of the Maryland Coastal Bays: assessing nitrogen source in relation to rainfall and brown tide Permanent Link

Fertig BM, Carruthers TJB, Wazniak C, Sturgess B, Hall M, Jones AB, and Dennison WC

Monitoring water quality and determining nutrient inputs is essential to assess ecosystem health. Partnering with the Maryland Coastal Bays Program and the Department of Natural Resources, this study focused on four regions in Maryland's Coastal Bays. These regions, St Martins River, Public Landing, Johnson's Bay, and Chincoteague Island, were found to be nitrogen 'hotspots' by the 2004 water quality assessment study. This data report provides a spatially explicit Water Quality Index and extent of sewage / septic nitrogen incorporated by two biological indicators, the macroalgae Gracilaria, and the native oyster, Crassostrea virginica.

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