Long Island's Estuaries


Long Island Sound
Peconic Estuary
South Shore Estuary
Hudson Raritan Estuary
Area of Surface Water
1320 square miles
247 square miles
173 square miles
~108 square miles
Area of Watershed
16,820 square miles
197 square miles
326 square miles
16,216 square miles
Population w/in watershed
> 8 million ; 20 mil w/in 50 mile radius
1.5 million
15-20 million
Major Freshwater Tributaries
90% from Housatonic, Conneticut, Thames, rivers; over 58 in total
Peconic river, stormwater, and groundwater
Carmans, Connetquat, Carls rivers; over 100 total
Hudson, Passaic, Hackensack, and Raritan Rivers
110 miles
46 miles
>70 miles
21 miles (widest pt)
18 miles
Miles of shoreline
600 miles
453 miles
650 miles
$ generated by services/resources per year
est. 5.5 Billion!
supports 30 K people; 3K buisnesses

In 2002, NY and NJ ports handled $89 billion in cargo, supplying 18 mil. customers. Supports 230 K jobs

Avg. depth
19.2 meters ~63 ft
4.7 meters
1-3 meters
Avg. surface water temperature
32°F winter /73°F summer
38 °F winter/ 72°F summer
38 °F winter/ 75°F summer
Eelgrass acres
2006: 1905 acres

1930: 8720 acres

2001: 1552 acres

Interesting Facts
>120 fish species occur; 50 spawn here
>150 threatened or endangered species in estuary and/or watershed
The most urban estuary on earth
>125 bird species rely for food and habitat
Home to the nation's 3rd largest container port
>200 spp. of fish frequent the estuary, including fluke, sea bass, striped bass, flounder, white perch
1/4 of all nesting herons b/w RI and Cape May make their home in the HRE

Next: Eelgrass Distribution: Now and Then


Long Island Sound Study: LIS facts webpage http://www.longislandsoundstudy.net/facts.htm

EPA Long Island Sound Facts, Figures, and Maps: http://www.epa.gov/region01/eco/lis/facts.html

Peconic Estuary Program http://www.peconicestuary.org/AboutPEP.html

The Long Island South Shore Estuary Reserve http://www.estuary.cog.ny.us/background-pages/about-the-reserve.htm

New York State DEC-Estuary Management Programs page http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/4934.html

New York/ New Jersey Baykeeper: The Hudson-Raritan Estuary Geography http://www.nynjbaykeeper.org/geography/

NYS DOS Division of Coastal Resources: South Shore Estuary Reserve http://www.nyswaterfronts.com/initiatives_southshore.asp


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