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Resolving spatiotemporal characteristics of the seasonal hypoxia cycle in shallow estuarine environments of the Severn River and South River, MD, Chesapeake Bay, USA

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ABSTRACT

The nature of emerging patterns concerning water quality stressors and the evolution of hypoxia within sub-estuaries of the Chesapeake Bay has been an important unresolved question among the Chesapeake Bay community. Elucidation of the nature of hypoxia in the tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay has important ramifications to the successful restoration of the Bay, since much of Bay states population lives within the watersheds of the tributaries. Very little to date, is known about the small sub-estuaries of the Chesapeake Bay due to limited resources and the difficulties in resolving both space and time dimensions on scales that are adequate to resolve this question. We resolve the spatio-temporal domain dilemma by setting up an intense monitoring program of water quality stressors in the Severn and South Rivers, MD. Volume rendered models were constructed to allow for a visual dissection of the water quality times series which illustrates the life cycle of hypoxia and anoxia at the mid to upper portions of the tidal tributaries. The model also shows that unlike their larger Virginian tributary counterparts, there is little to no evidence of severe hypoxic water intrusions from the main-stem of the Chesapeake Bay into these sub-estuaries.

No MeSH data available.


Spatiotemporal model of temperature in the South River 2010.
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fig0050: Spatiotemporal model of temperature in the South River 2010.

Mentions: The South River displays many similarities with the Severn with respect to temperature, especially in the temporal domain. However, the South River is shallower than the Severn which allows for greater mixing. Surface temperatures reached 33 °C in mid-July. Unlike the Severn River, stratification is weak at best and usually only forms around the middle potion of the river. Vertical mixing is strongest at the mouth in both the Severn and South Rivers. Horizontal temperature gradients in the South River are also similar to the Severn’s in that the coolest temperatures are located at the mouth and the warmest temperatures are found at the headwaters. In 2010, 30 percent of the spatiotemporal value for temperature was at or above the 29 °C isosurface (Fig. 10). However, this value dropped substantially to 7 percent in 2011.


Resolving spatiotemporal characteristics of the seasonal hypoxia cycle in shallow estuarine environments of the Severn River and South River, MD, Chesapeake Bay, USA
Spatiotemporal model of temperature in the South River 2010.
© Copyright Policy - CC BY-NC-ND
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5037264&req=5

fig0050: Spatiotemporal model of temperature in the South River 2010.
Mentions: The South River displays many similarities with the Severn with respect to temperature, especially in the temporal domain. However, the South River is shallower than the Severn which allows for greater mixing. Surface temperatures reached 33 °C in mid-July. Unlike the Severn River, stratification is weak at best and usually only forms around the middle potion of the river. Vertical mixing is strongest at the mouth in both the Severn and South Rivers. Horizontal temperature gradients in the South River are also similar to the Severn’s in that the coolest temperatures are located at the mouth and the warmest temperatures are found at the headwaters. In 2010, 30 percent of the spatiotemporal value for temperature was at or above the 29 °C isosurface (Fig. 10). However, this value dropped substantially to 7 percent in 2011.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The nature of emerging patterns concerning water quality stressors and the evolution of hypoxia within sub-estuaries of the Chesapeake Bay has been an important unresolved question among the Chesapeake Bay community. Elucidation of the nature of hypoxia in the tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay has important ramifications to the successful restoration of the Bay, since much of Bay states population lives within the watersheds of the tributaries. Very little to date, is known about the small sub-estuaries of the Chesapeake Bay due to limited resources and the difficulties in resolving both space and time dimensions on scales that are adequate to resolve this question. We resolve the spatio-temporal domain dilemma by setting up an intense monitoring program of water quality stressors in the Severn and South Rivers, MD. Volume rendered models were constructed to allow for a visual dissection of the water quality times series which illustrates the life cycle of hypoxia and anoxia at the mid to upper portions of the tidal tributaries. The model also shows that unlike their larger Virginian tributary counterparts, there is little to no evidence of severe hypoxic water intrusions from the main-stem of the Chesapeake Bay into these sub-estuaries.

No MeSH data available.