Estuaries are a critically important habitat for coastal and open marine waters. Located at the nexus between fresh and marine waters, these transitional environments serve as nurseries for most marine fish and shellfish and provide vital nesting and feeding habitats for many aquatic animals.
Indeed, most fish and shellfish eaten in the United States, including salmon, herring, and oysters, complete at least part of their life cycles in estuaries. Tampa Bay is one of 28 bays located across the United States and supported as important natural resources through the National Estuary Program. Tampa Bay is Florida’s largest estuary, covering approximately 254,700 acres, and supports a broad mosaic of habitats, including estuarine wetlands, freshwater wetlands, upland forests, seagrass beds, and submerged hard bottom.
Site map of the Piney Point facility showing the location of the LPWS, the NGS-N, and NGS-S, and other key hydrologic and facility features.