Save the Bay News: Ancient Sharks, Jellyfish, and Mighty Mussels

mussels to be planted in Richmond creek - Kenny Fletcher - 1171x593

Restoring freshwater mussels, like these destined for planting in a Richmond creek, is becoming increasingly necessary as their numbers decline.

Kenny Fletcher/CBF Staff

Our monthly roundup of engaging and educational content for you to enjoy at home.

It may feel like summer is winding down, but many Chesapeake critters are quite active in a final hoorah before fall. Naturalist John Page Williams, Jr. discusses osprey chicks taking their first flights, sea turtles, and stinging nettles in the latest episodes of our Chesapeake Almanac podcast. Round that out with a new study on the state of the watershed's freshwater mussels, a look back at the ancient, giant sharks that once called the Bay region home, and a primer on four things you should know about jellyfish as you enjoy late summer days on the water. Finally, keep tabs on a new federal program that would help restore fish and wildlife habitat as well as all the latest from our Around the Bay in 60 Seconds news roundup.

Large tan shark tooth in the palm of a hand

Megalodon’s name means “big tooth,” and that’s no exaggeration. Teeth like this one, measuring 4.5”, have been found along the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. It is currently on display at the Calvert Marine Museum.

Anjelica Eitel/CBF Staff

Big (Shark) Tooth

Megalodon, the world's largest ocean predator, once called the Chesapeake Bay region home millions of years ago. Its name means "big tooth," and we still find fossilized teeth, which are sometimes as large as 6 inches, along local beaches. What made the Bay an ideal habitat for this Miocene monster, and what happened to it?

Rainbow mussels at the Harrison Lake Hatchery in Charles City, VA.

Kenny Fletcher/CBF Staff

Video: Mighty Mussels in Peril

Carolina Slabshells, Tidewater Muckets, Green Floaters—an amazing diversity of freshwater mussels call the rivers and streams of the Bay watershed home. But a new report finds that we're losing these filter feeders faster than we can study them. Now, robust efforts are required to save the mighty mussel.

A white gelatinous creature with long tentacles floating in the water.

A sea nettle drifts in Spa Creek at Annapolis Marina in Annapolis, Maryland.

Matt Rath/Chesapeake Bay Program.

Feeling Jelly

It wouldn't be a Chesapeake summer without sea nettles. Despite the uncomfortable sting they inflict, jellyfish have long fascinated. There's something otherworldly, even graceful, about these pulsing, gelatinous animals. From where to watch for nettles to treating their irritating stings, here are four things you should know as you enjoy the water.

Close-up of an osprey chick, with inlay of episode title and narrarator John Page Williams.

Keeping Up with the Critters

Every Wednesday, naturalist John Page Williams, Jr. gives inside accounts of the Bay's creatures and seasonal events from his Chesapeake Almanac. In this month's episodes, he shares stories of sea nettles, giant and mysterious sea turtles, and osprey chicks as they begin to take their first flights.

A blue heron flies over a marsh at sunset.

Michael Adams

Watch for WILD

The U.S. House of Representatives is moving forward with full funding for the Chesapeake WILD program in its budget bill. This new program, which many CBF members have advocated for, will help restore fish and wildlife habitat and bolster recreational opportunities throughout the watershed. We're keeping a close eye on it!

Screen capture of title over an image of the Bay watershed and a clock.

Video: Around the Bay in 60 Seconds

In this month's news roundup, the recently passed Senate infrastructure bill includes a big increase for EPA's Chesapeake Bay Program funding, Pennsylvania students launch a campaign against an invasive pest, new reef balls go in the water for Bay oysters, Virginia legislators set aside money to address wastewater and septic system pollution, and more.

What You Can Do

  • Agriculture is an integral part of the Bay watershed's culture, heritage, and economy. One easy thing you can do for our farmers right now is to sign our pledge and show your support for federal investments in critical agricultural conservation practices that help our environment, economy, and way of life.
  • BayRaisers turn unique ideas, like the student-led Tributary Festival or Williamsburg city councilman's cross-state bike ride, into creative ways to save the Bay. Become a BayRaiser today or search and support one that inspires you.
  • August is National Make-a-Will Month! Invest 20 minutes of your time today to eternalize support for the people and causes that you love—and to protect the Bay forever. Start your free will now!
  • Help us continue to bring the Bay and its rivers to you at home each month. Donate today.

Issues in this Post

Advocacy   Habitat Loss   Ospreys  


The views and opinions expressed in the media or articles on this site are those of the speakers or authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions held by CBF and the inclusion of such information does not imply endorsement by CBF. CBF is not responsible for the contents of any linked Website, or any link contained in a linked Website, or any changes or updates to such Websites. The inclusion of any link is provided only for information purposes.

The Bay Needs You

The State of the Bay Report makes it clear that the Bay needs our support now more than ever. Your donation helps the Chesapeake Bay Foundation maintain our momentum toward a restored Bay, rivers, and streams for today and generations to come.

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Do you enjoy working with others to help clean the Chesapeake Bay? Do you have a few hours to spare? Whether growing oysters, planting trees, or advocating for a clean Bay, there are plenty of ways you can contribute.

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