Wetlands are transitional areas between open water (lakes, rivers, etc.) and dry land. Some wetlands are easy to identify because they contain distinctive plants such as cattails, rushes, and reeds. Wetlands are important natural resources because they provide many valuable functions including water quality protection, flood and erosion control, and fish and wildlife habitat. A number of local programs are underway to conserve these resources.
Monroe County Watershed Map (8.7mb PDF)
Basin, sub-basin and watershed are all terms that identify an area of land that drains to a particular waterway. We often prefer the term watershed for the drainage area of a creek. If you would like to find out which watershed you live in, a map is provided.
There are 13 gauging stations in Monroe County that collect data on streamflow. The map shows their locations.
Stormwater is the runoff from parking lots, roads, and driveways that enters a waterway (such as a stream, river, or lake) during a rain storm or snow melt. Both local and national research indicates that stormwater runoff is a primary source of pollutants to our local water resources. Many local programs are being implemented to address the water quality impacts of stormwater runoff.
The Rochester Embayment of Lake Ontario is a broad bay on the south shore of Lake Ontario at the mouth of the Genesee River. It is an approximately 35 square mile portion of Lake Ontario between Nine Mile Point in the Town of Webster and Bogus Point in the Town of Parma.
The watershed that drains to the Rochester Embayment includes approximately 3,000 square miles and includes all or parts of ten counties (nine in New York and one in Pennsylvania). In New York, most of the watershed lies within six counties: Allegany, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, and Wyoming.
Drainage into the Rochester Embayment comes from three major sub-basins: The Genesee River Sub-Basin, the Lake Ontario Central Sub-Basin and the Lake Ontario West Sub-Basin.
Download the Rochester Embayment Three Major Sub-Basins Map (150k PDF).
The Lake Ontario West Sub-Basin is the 309 square mile portion of Lake Ontario’s West Basin that drains to the Rochester Embayment. The West Sub-Basin includes parts of Monroe and Orleans Counties. Northrup Creek/Long Pond is a tributary to Lake Ontario within the West Sub-Basin.
The Lake Ontario Central Sub-Basin is the 224 square mile portion of Lake Ontario’s Central Basin that drains to the Rochester Embayment. The Central Sub-basin includes parts of Monroe and Ontario Counties. Irondequoit Bay is the dominant feature in the Sub-basin. Irondequoit Creek is the major tributary to Irondequoit Bay.
The Genesee River Sub-Basin is approximately 2,500 square miles in size and drains to the Rochester Embayment. Black Creek, Oatka Creek and Honeoye Creek are among the tributaries to the Genesee River. The Rochester Embayment Remedial Action Plan is the watershed plan for the Rochester Embayment and the Genesee River.
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