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In the upper reaches of the Chesapeake Bay there occur two distinctive distributions of suspended sediment and associated patterns of sediment transport. During the spring freshet the Susquehanna River overpowers the characteristic net nontidal estuarine circulation in the upper 20 to 30 kilometers of the estuary, and the net flow and sediment transport are seaward at all depths. The marked decrease seaward of the concentration of suspended sediment in the upper bay reveals the close link, during the freshet, between the suspended sediment population and the principal ultimate source of sediment—the Susquehanna River.

With subsiding river flow the net nontidal...

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