The National Estuarine Research Reserve System is a network of state-federal protected areas, representing diverse estuarine ecosystems. Elkhorn Slough NERR has 27 partner reserves that are located on both coasts of the US, as well as the Great Lakes and Puerto Rico. Since data are collected in an identical manner at all reserves, statistical comparisons can be made between regions and over time, providing a unique estuarine time series.

To see real-time weather and water-quality monitoring data from some of our monitoring stations, click here.

System-wide, these data have revealed trends in regional differences in the frequency of hypoxia, as well as differences in oceanic, atmospheric, or terrestrial forcing of estuarine dynamics between sites.

Locally, our data have revealed interesting short term fluctuations in dissolved oxygen and salinity. For instance, our Azevedo Pond site, with limited tidal circulation, undergoes virtually daily alternation between hypoxia and supersaturation. In summer, all of our upper Slough sites become hypersaline due to evaporation. This salty water mass moves out the mouth of the Slough on the next receding tide, leaving a distinctive signal at our lower Slough station.

To learn more about this program in general, or to download data from any of the 28 NERRs (including Elkhorn Slough), visit the webpage of our Central Data Management Office: http://cdmo.baruch.sc.edu.

Contact John Haskins, Water quality scientist regarding these programs.