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image of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV)

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV)

The shallow water along the shoreline is ideal habitat for submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV), or underwater grasses. SAV provides numerous benefits, such as fish habitat and carbon sequestration. About ten freshwater species of SAV can be found in the area from late spring through early fall, with the highest abundance in August and September. Common native species include Wild celery, Water stargrass, Coontail, and several types of naiads. However, non-native Hydrilla has dominated Mallows Bay since its introduction to the Potomac River during the 1970s and 80s. Though its thick, dense surface mats can block sunlight and crowd out native species of SAV, it still provides ecological benefits and is protected in the Chesapeake Bay.

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Check out this guide on SAV species!

Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) Images

  • 2023 Mallows Bay SAV Survey