Seagrasses provide critical habitat to key species and can improve water clarity. Seagrasses are submerged plants found in shallow waters and are critical to providing a number of benefit, including buffering coastal communities from storms, removing pollution from the water, and providing shelter for animals.

Seagrass in the Coastal Bays.

How is it measured?

Estimates of seagrass coverage (i.e., the bottom area covered) are derived each year using aerial surveys. The seagrass score is determined as the area of seagrass present in each of the six reporting regions as a percentage of the reporting region's restoration goal. 

Threshold Levels

Reporting regionSAV restoration goal by reporting region (acres)
St. Martin River48
Assawoman Bay1,745
Isle of Wight Bay1,476
Newport Bay341
Sinepuxent Bay3,031
Chincoteague Bay20,400