Chemical and physical characteristics of water in estuaries of Texas, October 1976-September 1978

Open-File Report 82-354




The Texas Water Plan (1968) proposes development and utilization of water resources in Texas and includes provision for the use and preservation of water in the estuaries of the State. Management of estuarine waters requires knowledge of the hydrodynamics and of the continuing changes in the chemical and physical characteristics of water in the estuaries.

In September 1967, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Texas Department of Water Resources began a cooperative water-resources investigation of the principal estuaries along the Texas coast (fig. 1) except the Rio Grande estuary, which is under the jurisdiction of the International Boundary and Water Commission, United States and Mexico.

The objectives of the investigation are to define: (1) The occurrence, source, and distribution of nutrients; (2) the physical, organic, and inorganic water-quality constituents and their areal distribution and time variations; (3) the chemical and physical characteristics of Gulf water that enters the estuaries; (4) the occurrence, quality, quantity, and dispersion of drainage entering the estuarine systems; and (5) the current patterns, directions, and rates of water movement.

The coastal waters of Texas are not classical estuaries, but are similar to them in ecosystems and mixing phenomena. A description of various types of estuaries is presented in "Estuaries" edited by Lauff (1967, p. 3-11). The term estuary as used in this report, refers to concomitant water bodies in which streamflow mixes with seawater.

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Chemical and physical characteristics of water in estuaries of Texas, October 1976-September 1978
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
Year Published:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Austin, TX
Contributing office(s):
Texas Water Science Center
Report: 213 p.; 3 Plates: 9.90 x 14.91 inches or smaller
Online Only (Y/N):
Additional Online Files (Y/N):