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Kennebunk River Watershed

Public Swimming Beaches

The Kennebunk River Watershed drains 38 square miles in the towns of Lyman, Arundel, Kennebunkport, and Kennebunk, Maine. It includes the main stem of the Kennebunk River, Lords Brook, Carlisle Brook and numerous small tributary streams, as well as Alewife Pond, Kennebunk Pond, and dozens of small ponds and wetlands. In the upper reaches of the watershed, the landscape is sparsely developed and includes over 4000 acres of mixed forest and agricultural land. Here the Kennebunk River begins where Lords Brook and Sunken Brook meet. The western portion of the watershed, around Carlisle Brook, includes parts of the USDA Massabesic Experimental Forest which provides significant habitat for several species of rare animals and Atlantic White Cedar Swamp communities. To the south, Alewife pond sits in a 2600 acre area of mixed forest and agricultural land which provides important inland waterfowl and deer wintering habitat. In the western part of the watershed, forest surrounds the wetlands of Punky Swamp and Arundel Swamp and development there is sparse.

The landscape bordering the main stem of the Kennebunk River is characterized by heavy agricultural use as it flows between Arundel and Kennebunk. Developed land increases as the river approaches the coast. The Kennebunk River forms a wide, tidal estuary as it approaches the coast and enters an area of higher density development. This inland marsh provides important waterfowl and wading bird habitat and has areas of significant habitat for the rare Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrow. The river passes through an area of dense development where impervious surface contributes to increased levels of stormwater runoff into the estuary.

Goochs Beach is located at the mouth of the Kennebunk River. This area provides important habitat for feeding shorebirds. It is also a popular spot for swimming and fishing.

The River is on Maine Department of Environmental Protection's Nonpoint Source Priority Watershed List.
The beaches by the mouth have tested high for enterococci bateria.
Shellfish beds have been closed for harvesting.
Ongoing Projects:
Kennebunk River Survey was completed in 2001
Key Resource(s) for Kennebunk River Watershed:
(Click the Title of the entry below to learn more.)
Kennebunk Land Trust
Community Assistance Providers
A land trust serving Kennebunk, Arundel, and Lyman.
Kennebunkport Conservation Trust
Community Assistance Providers
Region: Kennebunkport
Three Rivers Land Trust
Community Assistance Providers
A regional land trust for Acton, Alfred, Lebanon, Sanford, and Shapleigh in Maine
Kennebunk River Watershed Nonpoint Source Pollution Survey
Publications, Websites, and Tools
Survey of Non-point source pollution for the Kennebunk River.
Towns located in Watershed:
Alfred [ME]
Arundel [ME]
Kennebunk [ME]
Kennebunkport [ME]
Lyman [ME]
Counties located in Watershed:
York [ME]
 Website: www.co.york.me.us
 Phone: 207-324-1571
 Population SWIM Towns: 121,400
 Total County Population: 202,232 (U.S. Census Est. 2006)
 Area SWIM Towns: 645.3 square miles
 Total County Area: 1002.6 square miles
Waterbodies located in Watershed:
(WC-watercourse, WB-waterbody)

Alewife Pond [WB]; Arundel Swamp Brook [WC]; Brimstone Pond [WB]; Carlisle Brook [WC]; Davis Pond [WB]; Duck Brook [WC]; East Outlet [WC]; Grist Mill Pond [WB]; Kennebunk Pond [WB]; Kennebunk River [WC]; Lords Brook [WC]; Springy Brook [WC]; Sunken Brook [WC]; Ward Brook [WC]; Wonder Brook [WC]

The Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve at Laudholm Farm, Wells, Maine Copyright 2006 All rights reserved. Collaboration with NOAA CSC, Charleston SC