Chesapeake Bay Monitoring

Maryland routinely measures key components of the Chesapake Bay ecosystem including pollutant inputs, water quality, habitat, and living resources.

The purpose of this monitoring is to track the effectiveness of management actions, target areas in need of protection and restoration, and better understand Maryland's waterways to ensure that all Marylanders have access to safe, clean water.

These Chesapeake Bay monitoring programs are an integrated set of components that together provide a comprehensive assessment of Bay conditions.

​​DNR scientists testing water quality in the Bay

​Water Quality

The physical and chemical properties of Bay waters such as dissolved oxygen, temperature, and nutrient concentrations



Simple plants that range in size from tiny cells floating in Bay waters to large mats growing on bottom sediments

Under water view of Bay grasses

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV)

The plant types and areal coverage of submerged aquatic vegetation

Photo of river that empties into the Bay

River Input

The amount of nutrients, sediment, and freshwater entering the Bay from major tributaries

Illustration of an amphipod

Bottom Dwellers

The species and abundance of animals found living in the Bay bottom sediments

A vegetated storm water retention area in the Corsica River watershed

Special Projects

Research studies to better understand the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem