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A sediment budget for the Choptank River Estuary in Maryland, U.S.A.

Elsevier B.V.
Publication Date
  • Suspended Sediments
  • Estuarine Sediments
  • Estuaries
  • Runoff
  • Coast Changes
  • Beach Erosion


A sediment budget for the Choptank River, one of the three largest estuaries on the eastern shore of Chesapeake Bay, was developed from measurements of sediment carried in upland runoff, shore erosion, sedimentation, and levels of suspended sediments in estuarine waters. Shore erosion was the major source of sediment, contributing seven times more sediment than upland runoff. Low relief, the rural character of the Coastal Plain drainage basin, and the susceptibility of poorly consolidated shoreline materials to erosion contributed to the dominance of shore erosion over runoff as a sediment source. Box modelling indicated a net annual flux of sediment from the Choptank River to Chesapeake Bay.

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