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Last updated: June 12, 2014

Northwest District - Choctawhatchee Bay Water Quality Report Northwest District -Choctawhatchee Bay Water Quality Report


Choctawhatchee Bay Water Quality Report

The Northwest District Florida Department of Environmental Protection Watershed Management Section partners with the Okaloosa County Board of Commissioner's Environmental Council (OCEC) in a monthly water quality report for Choctawhatchee Bay sponsored by the Okaloosa County Tourist Development Council. Water quality samples are collected by the OCEC Aqualab Volunteers and are presented here for informational use only.

The map below depicts OCEC's Aqualab sampling sites for Choctawhatchee Bay in Okaloosa and Walton counties.

Related Information:

Water Quality Report Keywords

Okaloosa County Environmental Council
DEP Exit Disclaimer Link

The Florida Healthy Beaches Program DEP Exit Disclaimer Link

Development of Numeric Nutrient Criteria for Florida's Waters

Establishing Numeric Criteria for Florida's Waters

 

Aqualab Water Quality Monitoring Station Map
         *Reported value between Practical Quantitation Limit (PQL) and Minimum Detection Limit (MDL) and considered an estimated value.  Field observations reflect surface water conditions and samples are taken in flowing water below the water's surface. For more information, questions or data confirmation, please contact: cheryl.bunch@dep.state.fl.us

Sample
Date

05/18/2014

Location
Water
Body

Water Temp
(°F)

Dissolved
Oxygen

(Estimate)


Salinity
(PPT)

Total
Nitrogen

(PPM)
   

Total
Phosphorous

(PPM)


Field Notes

2

Santa Rosa Sound at Landing Park

80F

3.0 PPM

5.4

0.65

0.058

None

3

Cinco Bayou

79°F

6.0 PPM

4.2

0.60

0.018

None

4

Garnier Bayou

79°F

4.5 PPM

3.7

0.56

0.015

None

6

Boggy Bayou

75°F

5.0 PPM

2.4

0.37

0.012

None

7

Rocky Bayou

78°F

6.0 PPM

1.2

NR

NR

None

8

White Point

80°F

4.5 PPM

2.5

0.54

0.021

None

9

Regatta Bay

NR

NR

NR

NR

NR

None

10

Mullet Creek
Mouth of Bay

72°F

4.0 PPM

1.9

0.30

0.016

None

11

Turkey Creek

67°F

5.0 PPM

0.0

0.20*

0.004*

None

12

North of Mack Bayou 

77°F

10.0 PPM

2.9

0.55

0.031

None
13 Hogtown Bayou 85°F 8.0 PPM 3.3 0.50 0.027 None

14

La Grange Bayou

74°F

8.0 PPM

0.4

0.44

0.041

None

15

Bay@ US 331 Bridge

79°F

NR

0.47

0.53

0.044

None

16

Tucker Bayou

77°F

8.0 PPM

0.35

0.65

0.046

None

17

East Pass Marina

75°F

3.0 PPM

8.3

0.47*

0.031

None

18

Old Pass Lagoon

78°F

4.0 PPM

7.8

0.60

0.066

None

19

Alaqua Bayou

70°F

6.0 PPM

0.19

0.41

0.033

None

20

Joe's Bayou

74°F

4.0 PPM

2.9

0.55

0.039

None

21

Garnier Bayou @
Longwood Park

NT

NT

NT

NT

NT

None

Disclaimer: This report is provided for informational use only. For current advisories or confirmation, direct contact with the appropriate Department representative should be made in matters that require confirmation to the intent or currency of the information presented.
For current open/closed status of shellfish harvesting areas, contact the Division of Aquaculture Shellfish Information Hotline (1-850-747-5252). 

NT=Sample not taken. NR=Not Reported

                                                                 


Water Quality Report Keywords

Salinity- Salinity is a measurement of the salt content in water and is usually expressed in Parts Per Thousand (PPT). Seawater has about 35 parts of salt per 1000 parts of water. Drinking water is less than 0.5 PPT. Salinity levels control the types of plants and animals that live in the different zones of the estuary.

Nutrients- Nutrients, which include ammonia, phosphorus, total kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN), nitrite and nitrate are chemicals required by plants for maintenance and growth. Nitrogen and phosphorus along with water temperature and sunlight control phytoplankton abundance. Although nutrients are essential for the growth of an estuary's plants, an excess may trigger a string of events that depletes dissolved oxygen in the water. Total Nitrogen is the sum of NO2 + NO3 + TKN.

For more information regarding nutrients, see http://www.dep.state.fl.us/water/wqssp/nutrients/

Dissolved Oxygen- Dissolved oxygen is an essential indicator in assessing an estuary’s health. Oxygen enters the water from the atmosphere and through aquatic plant and phytoplankton photosynthesis. The oxygen is then available for aquatic organisms to utilize in basic metabolic processes. Most plants and animals can grow and do well when the dissolved oxygen level exceeds 5 mg/l.  Oxygen is used up during the decomposition of organic material. An overload of nutrients from human activities cause overgrowth of phytoplankton. The phytoplankton ultimately die and fall to the bottom where they decompose, using up oxygen. The dissolved oxygen test performed by Aqualab field representatives represents an estimate of the oxygen available at the time of water quality sampling.

Water Temperature- The temperature of the water at the time of sampling is routinely documented and reported during water quality monitoring. Water temperature influences biological and chemical processes, affects local and migrant aquatic species and is a major factor in biological activity and growth. As temperature increases, the water's ability to retain oxygen is lowered which decreases levels of dissolved oxygen available to aquatic organisms, as well as increasing oxygen demands by stimulating biological growth. Ambient water temperatures affect what aquatic species live in what water and sudden changes may cause mortality.

Field Notes - Field observations which may include the presence of seaweed, algae, stingrays and jellyfish, or Fish Kills.


For more information, questions or data confirmation, please contact:

cheryl.bunch@dep.state.fl.us