Anne Arundel County, Maryland
Funded in FY2019 through the National Fish Habitat Action Plan.
Submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) beds in the Chesapeake Bay filter polluted runoff; provide food for waterfowl; and provide habitat for blue crabs, juvenile striped bass, and other aquatic species. SAV can improve water quality by absorbing nitrogen and phosphorus, reducing erosion, and anchoring sediments. Unfortunately, SAV acreage has declined significantly since the 1950’s in the Bay due to degraded water quality, physical anthropogenic disturbance, and storms. Maryland Department of Natural Resources and Anne Arundel Community College are working with partners to increase populations of three mesohaline (widgeon grass, redhead grass, and sago pondweed) and one freshwater species (wild celery) of SAV through seed collection and distribution. This will restore an estimated 10 acres of fish habitat, contributing to the Chesapeake Bay Program’s overall goal of restoring and maintaining a total of 185,000 acres bay-wide.
Text and images provided by Maryland Department of Natural Resources.