For decades, the East and Western Bays have been experiencing declining water quality, excessive seaweed growth, and increased shellfish closures. For over a decade, the Bays have been listed on the New York State DEC 303D list of impaired water bodies for pathogens. In 2005, they were added as an impaired water body for nutrients including excessive nitrogen content.
The unique ecological features, critical habitat and overall health status of the East and Western Bays is rapidly deteriorating. Damages include habitat loss and declining water quality. Recreational fishing, particularly for flounder, and commercial shell fishing are on the decline – with many areas permanently closed.
SPLASH facilitates studies conducted in the Eastern & Western Bays by providing funding, crewed boats and equipment to the following partners in research:
- Stony Brook University
- United States Geological Service
- Adelphi University
- Hofstra University