THIS IS FROM JAN EDWARDS, OF WWW.sanbernardtx.com.concerning the water quality of the river during the recent flood events.
Mike – We have some interesting results from this month’s water quality report for the lower San Bernard River. Two months ago was the first time since we started doing this in 2009 that the water was so fresh we could not measure it with the equipment we have (that was a flooding event down the Bernard). Last month we could measure the salinity again, but this month marks another first. This is the second time the river has been too fresh to measure the salinity – that’s twice in three months and that is the first time something like that has happened since we have been doing the testing. The water temperature is up and the oxygen content is down considerably (even compared to a year ago).The fresh water seems to be coming mostly from the flood waters of the Brazos flowing down the Intracoastal Canal. The interesting thing is, the water from the Brazos seems to be going both up and downstream on the Bernard. Meanwhile, the Brazos continues to spew tons of sand out of its mouth into the Gulf of Mexico. In this case, it looks like the mouth of the San Bernard is sanding up both from the river side and the Gulf side due to Brazos flood waters. (Reference Bert Smith’s pictures from June 1 and 6 found on www.sanbernardtx.com ) There is so much organic material in the flood waters that we are watching for an incidence of black water as a result from these flooding waters. Numerous barges are backed up waiting to cross the Brazos at the flood gates, but the Brazos is on restrictions and they cannot get across. This has been going on for days now. That’s a whole lot of money sitting still. There is no question in our mind that if the mouth for the San Bernard was open, this flooding event would be greatly reduced in both size and time it takes to clear the flood plain.
There is no marine bird life working across the river and there usually is this time of year. We saw the first showing of schools of mullet working upstream for the first time this year.
Anyway – we thought you would like to have our observations.
We will be posting this information on www.sanbernardtx.com in the next day or so.
Jan and Roy Edwards