Fun Fact About the Chesapeake Bay


This week at J World Annapolis we are hosting our third annual Kids on Keelboats program.  Kids on Keelboats is a five day sailing camp for kids age 12-16, held on our fleet of J/80’s.  The kids follow our Basic Keelboat curriculum while also learning about Chesapeake Bay ecology, Annapolis history and more.  Kids keep you on your toes – so here are 10 things you may not have known about our Chesapeake Bay.

  1. The Bay was formed during the end of the last Ice Age as glaciers melted, causing the Susquehanna River basin to flood.
  2. The largest river feeding into the Bay is the Susquehanna, which provides the Bay with 19 million gallons of fresh water each minute.
  3. The Bay is the largest estuary – where river water combines with seawater – in the United States and third largest in the world.
  4. The Chesapeake Bay is fairly shallow; average depth is only 21 feet.
  5. The Native Americans, who originally lived in the area, gave it the name Chesepiooc, meaning “great shellfish bay.”
  6. More than 500 million pounds of seafood are harvested from the Bay each year.
  7. A single adult oyster can filter up to 60 gallons of water a day.  Oysters were once so plentiful they could filter the entire volume Bay water in a few days.  This process now takes over a year.
  8. Forests cover 58 percent of the Chesapeake Bay watershed.  The region loses about 100 acres of forest each day to develop.
  9. The watershed for the Chesapeake Bay consists of parts of six states, Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and the entire District of Columbia.
  10. The Bay and its tidal tributaries have 11,684 miles of shoreline – that’s more than the entire U.S. West Coast.

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