Studies of the Effects of Alterations of Freshwater Inflows into Matagorda Bay Area, Texas - Phase 1 Final Report


This document is the final report for Phase I of a projected three-year study of Matagorda Bay. It was the purpose of Phase I to assemble and compile available information on the Matagorda Bay system, and to synthesize thereby our present knowledge of the hydrography and ecology of this system. While later phases are intended to institute original studies and add to the base of knowledge, it is important to recognize that this first effort is confined to existing information. This is not to say the study was confined to existing literature. In fact, much of the effort in Phase I was devoted to securing, reducing and analyzing data holdings of various agencies. Although this massive data compilation represents a notable contribution, it nonetheless falls within the classification of existing information. Our ability to comment on various aspects of the Bay system, such as internal sedimentary processes, bay circulations, synergism in hydrographic tolerance limits, and specific habitat utilization of the key species, to name a few, has been ultimately delimited by "existing information". This is to be expected, and, indeed, one of the important objectives of the Phase I study is the identification of significant factors for which existing information is inadequate. The purpose of this report is to present the fundamental results of the Phase I effort in a compressed and cohesive document for assimilation by a general scientific readership. In order to keep the document within reasonable bounds, technical detail and background information have been minimized to only that essential to communicating and supporting the statements made. This has necessitated some sections being rather tersely written. Technical details, supporting data analyses, summary data tabulations and more comprehensive literature reviews have been relegated to the various appendices. (Appendix K, References, is bound together with this document for completeness.)


391 pages


freshwater inflow, Matagorda Bay, water quality management, estuarine ecology