DELAWARE is made up of some of the most beautiful watersheds in the mid-Atlantic region, but these are also some of our most threatened resources.
A watershed is the land that drains water into a river, stream, bay or any other body of water. The land and water are intimately connected - what we do on the land affects the water quality. We all live in a watershed and there are many things we can do to protect and improve the water quality in Delaware.
Delaware can be divided into 4 large watersheds.
The Piedmont areas in Northern Delaware, characterized by hills and rocky streams, flows into the Delaware River.
Waterways in western Delaware drain to the Chesapeake Bay, while in eastern Delaware they drain to the Delaware Bay.
Waters in Southeastern Delaware flow to the Inland Bays and the Atlantic Ocean. These larger watersheds are further divided into 45 smaller watersheds.
The Christina Basin Watershed in northern New Castle County contains the Brandywine Creek, Christina River, Red Clay Creek, and White Clay Creek sub-basins. Our dedicated volunteers monitor water quality at thirty locations throughout the basin. Chemical data has been collected at these sites since the end of 1995.
The Mispillion River Watershed contains 73 square miles along the boundary between Kent and Sussex counties where our volunteers have been collecting water quality data since 2003.
Volunteers are collecting data in watersheds all over the state, measuring dissolved oxygen, pH, alkalinity, nitrate nitrogen, phosphates, conductivity, and temperature. Streamside Habitat Assessments and Macroinvertebrates are also being collected at certain sites for a more complete picture of the overall health of Delaware's watersheds.
Volunteer data are used for environmental education, identifying areas of concern, and tracking how well different techniques (called Best Management Practices or BMPs) implemented to protect and improve the rivers, streams, and bays are working.
Volunteers in our Stream Adoption program are monitoring additional streams across the state.
Monitor your local stream »
Contribute more detail as a technical monitor »