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Threats to the Sound

The waters of Nantucket Sound are rich in wildlife throughout the year. Salt marshes, tidal estuaries, and shallow shoals are but a few of the habitats that are home to a variety of marine species. From herring and squid to seals and sea turtles, the diversity of wildlife found in and around the Sound is extraordinary.

Unfortunately, Nantucket Sound is vulnerable to activities that degrade the special qualities that make it such an important part of our regional coastal ecosystem. Overuse, pollution, and habitat loss are stressing natural systems beyond their capacity to cope and leading to environmental degradation.

The primary threats to the Sound are from septic system discharge, storm water and fertilizer runoff, discharge of vessel sewage, development in near shore and offshore waters, and deposits of airborne nitrogen from air pollution.