Pamlico River Water Quality Monitoring
There are approximately 25 Lower Tar-Pamlico River Basin monitoring stations. Some stations are sampled monthly, others are sampled on a weekly basis. Physical data such as dissolved oxygen, pH, temperature, and salinity are recorded at each station. Data from several stations along the lower Pamlico River are used to create a bigger picture of water quality conditions. These data are modeled weekly (see below) and yearly (see archived data at left).
Water samples are also collected at each station. Some examples include Turbidity, Total Suspended Solids, Nutrients, and fecal coliform. Extra samples may be collected depending upon the physical data observed by field staff.
The following figures illustrate how physical water quality parameters have changed over the last three months in the Tar-Pamlico River. Water column profiles (measurements recorded from surface to bottom in 1 meter intervals) are graphed to show changes in the water column over time. The scale bars above the graphs depict the units (either in parts per million or mg/L) through the various colors represented. Watch as these three important parameters change upstream to downstream, as well as top to bottom in the river. A variety of factors, including lunar tide, precipitation (rainfall), air temperature, and wind play roles in this dynamic body of water.