New York Water Science Center
Recent trends analysis examining the effectiveness of tidal wetlands regulations and the regulatory program of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) revealed that the regulations and regulatory program were highly effective in stemming the tide of historic "fill and build" activities. However, the trends also revealed that tidal wetlands—specifically, low marshes—were disappearing. To help determine the cause(s) of this loss, the NYSDEC, in collaboration with Stony Brook University's School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), established a monitoring program in 2008 which has been conducted on and in the tidal wetlands of East Creek, Sands Point; West Pond, Glen Cove; Frost Creek, Lattingtown; and Flax Pond, Old Field.
The USGS has operated a monitoring station that collects data on tidal water elevations at each of the four wetland embayments of Long Island Sound. These data have been relayed hourly via satellite telemetry to USGS offices in real time and made publicly available via the Internet within a few minutes of their arrival. At two of the embayments—East Creek and Frost Creek, data on water temperature and specific conductance which is used to compute salinity have also been collected and disseminated via the same processes employed for the water elevations. A third embayment—Flax Pond—has been equipped with an add-on water-quality monitor that has collected data on temperature, specific conductance (used to compute salinity), pH, dissolved oxygen, and turbidity; these data have also been disseminated with the water-elevation data.
First posted November 2011