Science and Monitoring

From Cecilton to Cambridge and everywhere in between, ShoreRivers staff and our army of volunteer citizen scientists monitor water quality at nearly 200 stations throughout the Chester, Choptank, Miles-Wye, and Sassafras River watersheds. We evaluate the water for common indicators, including dissolved oxygen, nutrient pollution, algae, pH, and clarity.  

In addition, we publish bacteria results in the SwimGuide and just kick-started an Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) monitoring program. 

Our water quality monitoring program is based on scientific protocols developed by the Mid-Atlantic Tributary Assessment Coalition (MTAC).  Each staff member and volunteer who participates in water quality monitoring is oriented with technical training and must attend and pass an annual training workshop to ensure all data points collected are accurate.  

All data points are collected and reviewed as part of our Quality Assurance Program.

We post our monitoring data for public use on our Digital Atlas (coming soon). We use our monitoring data to develop our annual Report Cards, to track the trends in water quality in our rivers, to identify and mitigate pollution sources, and to strategically prioritize restoration efforts. Our data is relied on by state and federal agencies and is used to support our policy advocacy efforts region-wide.