What is Brackish Water? PROBLEMS + How to Fix Them

Last Updated on April 9, 2020

Brackish, or “brack-ish” water is the result of mixing seawater and freshwater. This is so long as it’s with less salt than seawater and more salt than fresh water.

Water that is brack-ish normally has about 0.5 to 30 grams of salt per liter, which is not a very specific definition. So there is a wide range of salt concentrations that can be found in this type of water.

One important scientific component of this type of water is the level of salinity. Therefore, it can be said that brack-ish water has a high salt content variance. The salinity of a brack-ish water body can vary greatly over time. For example, an aquifer once at 5 g salt per liter may become even more salty e.g. 25 g salt / liter.

The occurrence of rain can cause the boundaries of freshwater and saltwater to shift, often changing brack-ish water volumes. The same result can occur with the addition of fresh water.

Brackish water is most commonly found in estuaries, where a freshwater river meets the sea. The resulting combination of saline freshwater and saltwater is brack-ish water.

Where is Brackish Water Found?

Known estuaries that affect the water level leading to water that is brack-ish in the surrounding waters are the Amazon River, the Thames Estuary, Chesapeake Bay, Fleet Lagoon and the Lower Hudson River, San Lorenzo River and Hampton Roads.

Mangroves are also classically brackish.

Many mangroves are located along the coasts, so there is a transitional salinity range that flows and decreases with the tide. In these marshes many fish breed and unique plants call these regions home.

Mangroves are an important buffer zone between ocean and land in some regions and protect the country from storm surges caused by hurricanes and tsunamis.

The semi-salty water can also be found in some inland lakes and seas such as the Caspian Sea.

The salinity in these lakes and seas can vary depending on water flow and season, and often hosts a variety of unique plants and animals. It is not uncommon to see stratification in these waters. With cold salt water in the ground and warmer fresh or brack-ish water in the upper part. Each layer hosts different animals, and the destruction of the layers can have unfortunate consequences for the local ecology.

Brackish Water Salinity

The salinity of the world’s seawater is between 32 and 35 parts per thousand.

Therefore, the salinity of brackish water should be less than this range. So it can be found everywhere where the currents and freshwater sources of the interior meet the ocean, i.e. the estuaries.

The pH of the water should be between 7.5-9.5.

The fish that live in brack-ish water form a different group and have adapted over the years to the chemical properties of this water.

How to Make Brackish Water

Brackish water is the mixture of salt water with fresh water.

The term “brackish” is an adjective used to describe “salty” or “briny” but not saline water.

In fresh water, the concentration of salts or salinity is almost zero. The salinity of water in the ocean is on average 35 parts per thousand (ppt).

Hence to make brack-ish water mix salt water with fresh water. Just ensure that the salinity level is between 0.5 and 35 ppt.

Brackish Water Salinity?

Brackish is technically water that contains 0.5 to 30 grams of salt per liter. This is most commonly expressed as 0.5 to 30 parts per thousand (‰). Which is a specific gravity that goes from 1,005 to 1,010.

Brackish Water Density

For water with a temperature of 77 degrees Fahrenheit, brackish water has a density of between 997.453 kg/m3 and 998.584 kg/m3.

Meanwhile, fresh water, on the other hand has a salinity of 0 at 77 degrees and a density of 997.075 kg/m3.

Brackish Water Aquarium

A brackish water aquarium is an aquarium in which the water is brack-ish. The range of “salinity” varies widely from near freshwater to near seawater. The brack-ish water aquarium is a popular specialty in fishing.

Brackish Water Aquarium Tips and Facts:

  • Brack-ish water fish are easy to feed and readily adapt to changes and water conditions.
  • The aquarium should be as large as you can afford, as brack-ish water fish require more room than freshwater ones.

Brackish Water Animals

The mangroves is one definite place where brackish water forms. This makes it the perfect place to find brack-ish water animals. There are many ways to keep fish in brackish aquariums, especially at very low salinity levels. The type of brack-ish water animals you may be able to keep are:

  • Live‑bearing aquarium fish.
  • Indian prawn.
  • Celebes rainbow.
  • Euryhaline.
  • Drum.
  • Chiromantes haematocheir.

Brackish Water Fish

Brackish fish originate from areas in which freshwater meets saltwater. Fish that live in these areas are able to tolerate a wide range of salt levels. Brack-ish fish do best in water with a salinity of 1.015, or 1/4 cup marine salt per gallon, and a pH of 7.5 to 8.4.

  • Brackish Water Invertebrates
  • Water Plants (Brackish)
  • Brackish Corals
  • Water Snails (Brackish)

Infuriating Brack-ish Water PROBLEMS

Brackish or briny (stagnant) water has a salt content that is a mix of freshwater and seawater. In many parts of the world brackish water appears natural and forms an important habitat for some unique animal species.

Red CrossIt can cause environmental damage as it is harmful to organisms that can not adapt to it.

Red CrossThis becomes a problem when the water is deliberately grown, is the case in some regions, in order to grow the desired edible fish.

Red CrossIt is also unpleasant to drink and can cause health problems.

The best water treatment systems for brack-ish water are those that can filter out salt from water.

Brackish Water Treatment Systems

Raritan Purasan™ EX Treatment System

PurasanTM EX treatment system is one of the few brackish water treatment systems that is specifically capable of treating brack-ish water.Mr Water Geek Thinking

Although it deals with brack-ish water, it is capable of so much more. For instance, it neutralizes waste, making it sanitary and safe for boaters and marine life.

The system has a design that makes it suitable for all toilets in salt or fresh water.

Raritan’s onboard sewage treatment device is legal for use in any area not considered a federal NDZ (No-Discharge Zones).

Features and specifications:
  • Dispenser can be mounted at any height.
  • Control indicates when the tablets are empty.
  • No dosing valve for water control as this is fully programmable.
  • The table packaging eliminates the hazardous materials tariffs.
  • Using the drained solution with air pump extends the life of the tablet.
  • Low energy consumption.
  • You can use it with most ship toilets.
  • Facilitates the need to keep tanks.
  • Electronically controlled treatment cycle of two minutes.
  • Neutralizes bacteria in the wastewater.
  • Easy to clean and to maintain.
  • Quiet operation.
  • You can install the A PurasanTM in two toilets.
  • Treats waste in brack-ish and fresh water applications.
  • Marine Medical Device Type I, approved by the US Coast Guard for boats up to 65 feet in length.
  • Each unit is hand-made, individually tested and backed by the 1-year limited warranty.

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