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A Day in the Life of the Hudson River Estuary

Thursday October 20, 2016

Watch a clip about the "A Day in the Life of the Hudson River" Program and check out other clips on DEC's YouTube Channel.

filling a turbidity tube to measure water clarity On one day each autumn, thousands of students from New York City to Troy participate in the annual "A Day in the Life of the Hudson River" event. Students collect scientific information to create snapshots of the river at dozens of locations, then share their data via the web so they can better understand how their piece of the river fits into the larger Hudson estuary ecosystem. "A Day in the Life" is sponsored by DEC's Hudson River Estuary Program and produced with assistance from the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University. The 2016 school and site list is now available. Please note that some of the times are tentative.

At each location, teams of students and environmental educators use seine nets, water testing kits, and measuring tools to investigate aquatic life, water chemistry, tides and weather. Many groups also collect core samples of river bottom mud for analysis.

measuring salinity with a hydrometer

Participants' findings contribute to ongoing research projects, and data from the event are incorporated into lesson plans developed by the Hudson River Estuary Program and available to all teachers in the Hudson Valley.

Where possible, Estuary Program staff facilitate partnerships between participating classes and local environmental education organizations for Day in the Life. Training workshops, online lesson plans, specialized equipment, thirteen years of results, and other resources are provided.

For more information about Day in the Life as well as access to past data, instructions and recording sheets for gathering data, and visual aids, please visit the Day in the Life of the Hudson River Estuary webpage (link leaves DEC) on the Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory website, or contact Rebecca Houser at

A Day in the Life of the Hudson River Estuary 2015

The thirteenth annual Day in the Life of the Hudson River in 2015 was a huge success! More than 5,000 participants sampled the estuary at over 80 locations! Thanks to the students who shared their findings, Estuary Program staff were able to create the following place-based, data-driven worksheets for classroom use.

To access more lesson plans and resources use the offsite link "Official Day in the Life of the Hudson River Web Site" in the right hand navigation column.