||Science Applications International Corp., Narragansett, RI. ;Computer Sciences Corp., Falls Church, VA. ;Rhode Island Univ., Kingston. Graduate School of Oceanography.;Environmental Research Lab., Narragansett, RI.
Annual monitoring of indicators of the ecological condition of bays and estuaries within the Virginian Province (Cape Code, MA to Cape Henry, VA) was conducted by the U.S. EPA's Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMPA) during July, August, and September, 1991. Data were collected at 154 stations within the Province. Indicators monitored included water quality (temperature, salinity, water clarity, and dissolved oxygen concentration), sediment contamination, sediment toxicity, benthic community structure, fish community structure, fish gross external pathology, and fish tissue contamination. Data are used to estimate the current status of the ecological condition of Virginian Province estuarine resources, and provide a baseline for identifying future trends. Cumulative distribution functions (CDFs) and bar charts are utilized to graphically display data. Estimates, with 95% confidence intervals, are provided of the areal extent of degraded resources within the Province for those indicators where 'degradation' can be defined. Data are also presented by estuarine class: Large estuaries, small estuarine systems, and large tidal rivers. Included, as an appendix, are sub-population estimates for Chesapeake Bay and Long Island Sound.