By: Zach Blackburn
Location of Estuary
The Pamlico Sound is located in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The estuary itself stretches from Manteo all the way down to Cape Lookout. This estuary is the largest in North Carolina serves an important part of the environment and people. This estuary is one of the best looking estuary's in North Carolina.
Importance of Estuarys
The Pamlico sound is very important to North Carolina because it offers economical opportunities and attracts tourist. Some people rely on the estuary to support them financially. Several commercial fishing operations are in the Pamlico sound. Because of all this fishing, it also provides people who live near the estuary fresh food. Also Tourists from all over the nation come to visit the sound for recreational activities as well as vacation. Mainly, the estuary attracts people for recreational purposes such as swimming, surfing, and tubing. Estuaries in general are important because they help control erosion and reduce flooding for places on the mainland. They also act as a natural water cleanser. The remove water pollutants that may flow into them. It is important that we keep them healthy so can continue to do this.
Plants and animals in the estuary.
The Pamlico sound offers a wide variety of different plant and animal species. There are over 150 different fish species that live in the sound. Some fish species include Black sea bass and flounder. Some plant species that live in the estuary includes the maple, tupelo, and cypruss trees as well as many species of grasses and reeds.
Rivers that feed the estuary.
Since the Pamlico sound is such a large estuary, several major river basins dump into the sound. Some of the river basins that flow into the Pamlico sound are the Roanoke river basin, the Tar-Pamilco river basin, the neuse river basin, the Chowan river basin, and the Pasquotank river basin.
Threats to the Pamlico sound
The Pamlico sound as well as every other sound and river basin in North Carolina is subject to major pollution. The majority of the pollution that occurs in the Pamlico sound is non-point source pollution. A non-point source pollutant is a pollutant that you can't directly point too. Some non-point source pollutants that affects the Pamlico sound is city sewage, industry, and agriculture. Sewage water is poorly dumped into the estuary because of the increase of local population. The size of the sewage plants is not big enough to handle all that water. Runoff from local farms also affects the sound because if you set pesticide out right before it rains, the water will wash it into the estuary and will start a algal bloom, which take all the oxygen out of the water. Finally, industry effects the sound because some factories dump untreated water into the sound, which can kill marine life.