The Pamlico Sound holds the distinction of being the largest estuary in the US about which there is the least known. The NC estuaries provide essential forage and refuge habitat for a variety of important fish populations. There is a critical need to predict ecosystem response to water quality change in the Pamlico Sound for guiding future management action. Quick action is required given the accelerated pace of land use change in tributary watersheds and predicted continued increase in the frequency of tropical storms.
Scientists, water quality managers and the public (through the website) are kept informed of water quality conditions in the Neuse River Estuary and Pamlico Sound by simple measurements, such as salinity, temperature, oxygen, and chlorophyll a.
By using the ferry system to take measurements, the scientists and managers spend less time collecting samples, and devote more time to using the information to inform the agencies, researchers and public of up to date water quality and fisheries habitat conditions. FerryMon generates a clear, useful day-to-day picture of the environmental conditions of the Neuse River Estuary and Pamlico Sound.