Ninigret Salt Pond

Physical Characteristics

"The humans are coming...the humans are coming!"

Ninigret Salt Pond has changed a lot over the past few hundred years. The pond attracts many tourists and seasonal residents who make use of its waters for fishing, swimming, and windsurfing. There has also been a dramatic increase in the number of year round residents in the area surrounding the salt pond. These increasing demands threaten the health of the pond and reduce the diversity of pond life. Pollution, primarily from sewage and lawn-care chemicals, has become a serious issue for Ninigret Salt Pond. After heavy rainfall parts of the pond have to be closed to shellfishing because the fecal coliform bacteria are found in such high concentrations in the water. Nutrients from lawns and gardens enter the pond from runoff from the surrounding residential areas and cause algal blooms that can lead to eutrophication. Pesticides entering the pond ecosystems especially pose a threat to the young of many species that use the pond eelgrass beds and salt marshes as nursery areas.