December 2012 • Volume 11, Number 4
Is the health of the Chesapeake Bay getting better or worse? Is the Bay cleanup campaign a success or a failure? Or something in between? Hard questions to answer, especially in light of good news about bay grasses and blue crabs and bad news about rising sea levels.   more . . .
Why would the Susquehanna Flats suddenly be full of bay grasses? Two years ago Michael Kemp was motoring across the northern end of Chesapeake Bay with a boatful of scientists and students, checking out reports that underwater grassbeds might be expanding along the famous shoals that sit at the mouth of the Susquehanna River. Kemp has spent 35 years studying bay grasses and for most of those years those grasses have been declining throughout the Chesapeake.   more . . .

Emissions from a coal-burning power plant. Credit: Alfred T. Palmer (1944), Library of Congress Collection
The water in the Bay may be getting cleaner, largely because the air is getting cleaner. That's an unexpected and somewhat ironic success story that is emerging from recent research on the upper reaches of some of the Bay's tributaries.   more . . .
Crab jubilee. Credit: Kevin Fleming
Few people will ever see a crab jubilee in Maryland. During these events, blue crabs, by the dozens or hundreds, scuttle out from the deep and up the banks of the Chesapeake Bay. Scientists say such jubilees are a sign that something's rotten down below.   more . . .

Underwater grassbeds, like this patch of Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum), have come back in Gunston Cove. The water is clear enough for grasses to survive again, the result of upgrades to a water treatment plant nearby and long-term efforts by activists.   more . . .
Fredrika Moser. Credit: MIchael W.Fincham
Fredrika Moser has been named director of the Maryland Sea Grant College after more than a decade of service to the program as its assistant director for research and, since 2011, its interim director.   more . . .
For More Information
Want to identify underwater bay grasses? Buy a copy of our field guide, or give it as a gift to a Bay lover. Click here for information about the guide and for more information about all the topics covered in this magazine.
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