Science Serving Maryland's Coasts


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Chesapeake: The Twilight Estuary

39 Minutes.

DVD. UM-SG-DV-2007-02.

Producer/Writer/Director: Michael W. Fincham
Cinematographers: Mac Nelson, Russ Nichols and Nick Caloyianis

Cost: $24.95 plus $1.50 state tax (Maryland residents only) and shipping and handling (rates)

A detective story about the investigation of an environmental mystery: What was killing the seagrasses in the Chesapeake Bay, the country’s largest and richest estuary?

Beneath the surface of the Chesapeake Bay, in a twilight world where shafts of light barely pierce the water, a blanket of seagrasses once flourished. These grassbeds were feeding grounds for geese and wild swans and ducks. They harbored fish and soft-shelled crabs, creating a nursery ground and habitat.

But all around the estuary, a dozen species of seagrass began disappearing. Geese began feeding on farm fields instead of on grasses, ducks were soon dwindling, and the Bay’s legendary productivity began to fade.

What was killing the grasses? And what did the great dieoff mean for the health of all the Bay’s living plants and animals?

When scientists began investigating, they came up with some unexpected answers that changed our understanding of the Chesapeake.

A perennial favorite with teachers of environmental studies, The Twilight Estuary is an unusually sophisticated — and accessible — science film.


Best of Festival
National Association of Environmental Education
American Film Festival
CINE Golden Eagle
Council of Nontheatrical Events

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Chesapeake: The Twilight Estuary (DVD).
Fincham, Michael, writer/producer. 2007. UM-SG-DV-2007-02. $24.95.

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