Things to Consider Bays&Estuaries

By Allie Smith, Frida Arroyo, & Sammi Whitlock

Big image

Why do bays differ from estuaries? How are they similar?

Bays are a body of water which is partially enclosed by land that is directly connected to the ocean, whereas an estuary is a partly enclosed body of water along the coast in which streams or rivers inflow and mix fresh and salt water together. While bays often double as estuaries, there are also instances in which an estuary juts out into the ocean without becoming a bay called a delta. They both tend to be brackish water, although the percentage of salt water varies. Any pollutants from downstream will inflow down to each of these bodies of water, and will therefore end up in the ocean. So while you think something you throw out when you're no where near the beach cannot reach the sea, there is a possibility that your trash can effect the ocean.

(Ch. 11-

What is a hypersaline bay?

A hypersaline bay is a bay that has a very high percentage of salt water, more so than the usual content. Life in the bay is not as diverse as other places because only certain species can make their home in the salty content of the bay. (


Barrier Island: a broadened barrier beach that provides a measure of protection for the mainland.

Bays: body of water that's larger than a cove but smaller than a gulf.

Estuaries: the part of the mouth or lower course of a river in which the river's current meets the sea's tide.

Hypersaline: very salty water

Inflows: something that flows in; influx

Migratory: roving, nomadic, wandering

Tides: periodic rise and fall of the waters of the ocean and its inlets; produced by the attractionof the moon and sun.

(Some definitions from the Texas Aquatic Science handbook written by the Texas Parks and Wildlife staff. The rest came from Merriam-Webster Dictionary.)