Chesapeake Bay Benthic Monitoring Program

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Patuxent River

Stratum Summary

Benthic community degredation in the Patuxent River appears to be related to adverse effects from low dissolved oxygen, although other factors also influence benthic community condition in this system. The intensity of summer hypoxic events varies annually, and this variability is reflected in the B-IBI. Over the 1995-2003 time series, benthic community degredation in the Patuxent River, as measured by the B-IBI, was higher in the last four years than in previous years (chart below). The frequency of low dissolved oxygen events was higher in 2000, 2001, and 2003. In 2002, hypoxia was not as severe, and this is noted in the relatively lower percentage of benthic condition in the severely degraded category.

The Patuxent River sampling stratum coincides with the Patuxent River Basin. There are further details at the basin level which the Benthic Program provides to summarize benthic community condition for the Patuxent River Tributary Team. Tributary Teams consider basin summaries that synthesize monitoring information from several sources, including watershed, ambient water quality, habitat, and living resources components. This information is linked to nutrient and sediment pollution sources and is intended to provide the Tributary Teams with resources to consult in setting Tributary Strategy Goals.



 

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URL http://esm.versar.com/vcb/benthos/strata/upperbay.htm

Revised: Sept 10, 2013