This photograph shows a heron. Herons like the Great Blue Heron stand about 4 feet tall and have a wing span of more than 6 feet! Herons like to hunt in the shallow coves of Chesapeake Bay, especially in all of the tributaries that empty out into the Bay. The Bay provides small fish, salamanders, frogs, snakes, lizards, shellfish, rodents and many insects for the herons to feast upon.
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Courtesy of USGS (United States Geological Survey

Life in Chesapeake Bay

Chesapeake Bay is an estuary that has a lot of plants, fish and animals living in it.

The plants are really important in Chesapeake Bay. The fish, birds and other animals eat the plants. And sometimes the fish and other creatures lay their eggs or hide their young in the plants.

The Bay is home to many fish, from the Bay anchovy to the sandbar shark. It supports blue crabs, horshoe crabs and American oysters. Humans get over 500 million pounds of seafood from the Bay each year! Sea turtles, eels, dolphins, rays, seahorses, and jellyfish also live in the Bay.

Thousands of birds call Chesapeake Bay their home. Bald eagles, snowy egrets, great blue herons, geese, swans, ducks and gulls all live in this place.

The things humans do have a big impact on the rest of life in Chesapeake Bay. You can help save life in Chesapeake Bay or wherever you live. Never throw garbage in the water...and if you see a piece of litter outside, pick it up and put it in a garbage can where it belongs.

Last modified June 19, 2001 by Jennifer Bergman.

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The Spring 2010 issue of The Earth Scientist, focuses on the ocean, including articles on polar research, coral reefs, ocean acidification, and climate. Includes a gorgeous full color poster!

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