A Day In The Life of an Estuary 

Students Sampling water quality at Marine Nature Study Area

What is "A Day in the Life"

A Day in the Life of an Estuary is a program that focuses on environmental education, community engagement and water-quality monitoring.  Nassau County Soil & Water Conservation District participates in hosting events and providing scientific equipment to students. A Day in the Life of an Estuary engages students from local middle and high schools with the goal of running a single-day field trip to three sites around Oceanside, NY. Students will have the opportunity to collect water quality samples, learn about ecosystem services and engage with local flora & fauna.


The NCSWCD hosted two "Day in the Life" events this year, one at the Marine Nature Study Area in Oceanside and another at the Jones Beach West End Boat Basin


After the field trip event, the data collected by student groups is processed and shared for analysis — an activity in which students are encouraged to participate in.  This can range from tracking water & soil health throughout Nassau County to GIS analysis of the collected data.


Learn more on the NYS DOS website

Jones Beach West End Boat Basin

Spirit of the Event

A Day in the Life is a great opportunity to allow school districts, conservation initiatives and government organizations to collaborate on real world conservation work.  The network of data-sharing ensures that the students will have the tools to continue engaging with local conservation efforts ultimately aiming to inspire the next generation of environmental scientists & conservationists. This program is focused on providing a hands-on environmental science experience for local 6-12 grade students. 

Educator showing students biological sampling

Town of Hempstead Conservation and Waterways staff member Mike Farina assisting students with live biological sampling. 

NCSWCD Staff educational event

District Manager Derek Betts setting up teaching stations.

Data Collection

Students are instructed to collect data with the help of project coordinators, this data will later be synthesized with data collected from other "A Day in the Life" events around Long Island. Data collected from these events is used to help industry professionals make informed decisions as well as monitor the health of the ecosystem. Students learn to take water quality readings for disolved oxygen, PH sampling and test for contaminants. In addition students learn to study soil samples, identify live specimine and understand healthy environmental readings as well as the factors that lead to harmful conditions. 

Marine Nature Study Area

Students using siene net for sampling

Town of Hempstead Conservation and Waterways staff member Mike Farina assisting students with capturing live specimens with a seine net. 

Soil core sample
Marine Nature Study Area Oceanside

NCSWCD Held their first "A Day in the Life" event at the Marine Nature Study Area in Oceanside.

Town of Hempstead manages the Marine Nature Study Area in Oceanside. This area located on Slice Drive, Oceanside NY and is a 52-acre preserve devoted to environmental education and the areas natural history.


Learn more about the Marine Nature Study Area here