Science Serving Maryland's Coasts

Research Publications: UM-SG-RS-2003-20


Preface--from ecology to economics: tracing human influence in the Patuxent River estuary and its watershed.




Breitburg, DL; Jordan, TE; Lipton, D


Estuaries 26(2):167-170




The Patuxent River, a tributary of the Chesapeake Bay, has served as a model system for efforts to understand the basic functioning of estuarine systems, to apply scientific principles and discoveries to management, and to implement and test management strategies. The siting of two research laboratories along its shores, the location of its watershed entirely within the state of Maryland and near the United States capital in Washington, D.C., and concern about its ecological condition by citizens within its watershed have led to the Patuxent playing a unique role as a test case for water quality and habitat restoration (D’Elia et al. 2003). In addition, novel efforts to link disparate fields from economics, to landscape ecology, to biogeochemistry, to fisheries and food web ecology have centered on the Patuxent River ecosystem.

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