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biggstriper

Chesapeake Bay question:

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Is the Bay freshwater or saltwater? Or is it brackish?

 

I saw a map that had freshwater Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass available in parts of the Bay. Someone asked me the question yesterday and it got me thinking.

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The bay up north is mostly fresh.  As you move further south the water will become some saline.



 



Smallies, LMB, and Stripers are there.  Little early for Stripers but the smallies are hungry.....



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As Mtd35 has said, it's both. After a lot of rain much of the upper & mid bay becomes more fresh than salt, conversely, little rain, more salt & further up the bay. I've caught freshwater fish at the Bay Bridge a few times when we had a lot of rain. Normally the bay is brackish, until you get down south closer to the mouth. All depends on the rain & just how much it effects it. Keep in mind the Susquehanna River, the very headwaters of the bay is mostly fresh, and runs a long way up thru PA & into NY, so even rain up there can influence how salty the bay may be. The upper ends of many of the other rivers are fresh too. Again, depends on how much rain goes into the bay. :)

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The Old Chesapeake bay formula( in perfect conditions)  is as follows for salinity. You don't start getting 100% saltwater until you get below Pocomoke.  From Tillman Island south its about 25% fresh and 75 % salt. From the Bay Bridge to Tillman Island about 50/50. Havre de Grace to the Gunpowder River about 10% salt and from the Gunpowder to the Bridge 25% saltwater. Having said that. As tidewater stated, it can change at anytime depending on the amount of freshwater feed into the bay/ or lack thereof freshwater feed into the bay. Its alot easier to just call it "the bay". what ever my two cents are worth.


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