Restoration of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation in the Freshwater and Mesohaline Region of the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland

Anne Arundel County, Maryland

Submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV or seagrass) 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, the amount of seagrass in the Bay has dropped significantly since the 1950’s due to poor water quality, human disturbance, and storms.

In FY2019, ACFHP secured funding through the National Fish Habitat Action Plan to support Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Anne Arundel Community College, and partners in their efforts to increase populations of brackish (mesohaline) and freshwater species of SAV. By collecting seeds and strategically redistributing them in key areas of the Bay, they will restore an estimated 10 acres of fish habitat. This work is contributing to the Chesapeake Bay Program’s overall goal of restoring and maintaining a total of 185,000 acres bay-wide.

Want to help expand on these restoration efforts? You can donate by contacting Lisa Havel, the ACFHP coordinator ( For every dollar donated, you can restore six square feet of SAV! 

SAV Restoration in Chesapeake Bay factsheet

Text and images provided by Maryland Department of Natural Resources.