Nature & Science
David B. Soete
The Upper Delaware River exhibits some of the highest ecological integrity found in any of the large rivers of this region. As the least developed section of the last major river on the Atlantic Coast, undammed the entire length of its mainstem, the Upper Delaware's wild and scenic, largely ecologically intact, free-flowing character supports key components and processes that contribute to the superb natural resources found here. Exceptional water quality, resulting from a predominately forested landscape, sustains high quality fish and aquatic insect assemblages. Excellent in-channel conditions result in an abundance of riffles, runs, and pools, and a diversity of in-stream habitats. These aquatic conditions, combined with good riparian habitat that is coupled with a functioning floodplain, provides great hydrological connectivity, structure, and function.