The importance of Estuaries
Estuaries provide vital nesting and feeding habitats for many aquatic plants and animals they also maintain healthy ocean environments and filter out sediments and pollutants from rivers and streams before they flow into the oceans, providing cleaner waters for marine life.
Rivers, Streams, and Waterways that feed into Roanoke Sound
The Roanoke Sound begins at the Blue Ridge Mountains and ends when it meets the Albemarle Sound. The North Carolina portion of the basin has two major parts: the Dan river and Roanoke River. The Roanoke enters North Carolina through “Kerr Lake” and continues though Lake Gaston and Roanoke Rapids Lake before flowing freely as a river downstream of Weldon. As it flows from the foot hills, across the “fall line” and to the Coastal Plain, the Roanoke River changes from narrow and lively to broad and slow .
Threats to the Roanoke Sound
The demand for water by consumers living in the basin is expected to increase as much as 55 percent by 2020. Also the amount and timing of water release from dams have affected the web of life down stream when natural patterns are changed significantly it can impact the health and diversity of plant and animal life.