water quality 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 rivers and Eastern Bay. We evaluate the water for common indicators, including dissolved oxygen, nutrient pollution, algae, pH, and clarity.

ShoreRivers also monitors bacteria at multiple sites throughout our rivers. We sample weekly or bi-weekly from Memorial Day through Labor Day and post results on SwimGuide and our social media pages. Click the image below for more information.

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 use our monitoring data to develop our annual Report Card, to track the trends in water quality in our rivers, to identify and mitigate pollution sources, and to strategically prioritize restoration efforts. Our data are relied on by state and federal agencies and are used to support our policy advocacy efforts region-wide.