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The Friends of the Royal River, a non-profit river conservation group in southern Maine, conducted a bi-weekly volunteer water quality monitoring program during the spring, summer, and fall months of 1993 through 1999. The purpose of the monitoring program was to assess the health of the Royal River and some of its tributaries by measuring and documenting the levels of important water quality indicators. This report summarizes and explains the results of that program, which tested for dissolved oxygen (DO), turbidity and fecal coliform bacteria at a maximum of 28 sampling locations each year. The sampling sites were located throughout the Royal River watershed, encompassing seven of the twelve communities in the watershed.

The results indicate that the main stem of the river and large portions of the watershed are in generally good health and for the most part meet Maine criteria for a Class B river system (or Class A where applicable, see footnote p.3) for the parameters tested. However, certain areas warrant closer scrutiny to determine if preventative measures will prevent further degradation to the river system. These areas include- Collyer Brook subwatershed which had high bacterial counts, Chandler Brook subwatershed with low DO, and the East Branch of Chandler Brook subwatershed with consistently low DO and high bacterial counts. The only discernible trend in water quality was suggested by data from the East Branch of Chandler Brook in Pownal where the mean DO readings decreased over a period of four years.

Specific recommendations are made for actions that could be taken to further monitor and document water quality in the Royal River watershed, to evaluate sources of nonpoint source pollution, to improve certain areas of the watershed, and to continue to expand the efforts of the Friends of the Royal River to protect and preserve this valuable resource.


This report was funded through a grant from the Maine Coastal Program of the Maine State Planning Office.


Watersheds, Royal River; Monitoring Water Quality; Toxics


Auburn, Brunswick, Cumberland, Durham, Freeport, Gray, New Gloucester, North Yarmouth, Poland, Pownal, Raymond, Yarmouth, Royal River



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