American River Trails
The Lower Potomac, Anacostia, Patuxent and Wicomico rivers are among the major waterways in the region, but hundreds of smaller streams, creeks and rivers abound providing numerous opportunities for recreational boating.
Anacostia River Watershed 176 square mile area of land encompasses most of the eastern half of the District of Columbia and large portions of Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland. The Anacostia has 13 major tributary creeks and streams many with their own sub-watershed citizen advocacy groups; it starts near Bladensburg, MD, and runs for 8.5 miles before meeting the Potomac River at Hains Point in Washington, DC.
A Watershed is where Water Flows into a River or other body of water; we all Live inside a Watershed
Anacostia River Trails and Port Towns the word is derived from the Nacotchtank Indian word anaquash; it means village trading center. In the 18th century the port at Bladensburg, Maryland, was 40 feet deep and served as a major center for colonial shipping fleets. Today, at Bladensburg Waterfront Park, site of the old port, the water often measures 3 feet deep or less. In the 18th century, the Anacostia River flowed through 2,500 acres of tidal wetlands. Today, less than 150 acres of wetland remain.
Wildlife the Anacostia River supports 188 species of birds and nearly 50 species of fish. Some of the animals you can see in and along the river include: bald eagles, beavers, white perch, ospreys, striped bass, cormorants, crayfish, herons, turtles, egrets, otters, herring, red fox, shad, kingfishers, and bullhead catfish.
Pollution and its Effect of Fish Species each year, Washington’s antiquated combined sewer system dumps over 2 billion gallons of raw sewage and storm water directly into the river. Recent efforts have begun to reduce this overflow volume. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), more than 20,000 tons of trash and debris enter the Anacostia’s waters each year. Between 1989 and 2009, AWS volunteers collected and removed more than 850 tons of trash from the watershed. Experts estimate that approximately two-thirds (2⁄3) of brown bullhead catfish in the Anacostia River have tumors. The bullhead is an environmental indicator species for the Anacostia.
Explore the Anacostia and Participate in Our Watershed Management Training Programs