The 31-square-mile (80 km2) watershed has its headwaters in Towson, Maryland, and flows through Baltimore and Baltimore County before discharging into the Back River, which empties into the Chesapeake Bay. The principal tributaries of Herring Run are the Western Branch, Chinquapin Run, Tiffany Run, Armistead Run, Biddison Run, Moores Run and Redhouse Run. The total length of the Herring Run main stem and tributaries is over 41 miles (66 km).
The Maryland Department of the Environment has listed the Herring Run as an impaired tributary, due to the elevated amounts of fecal coliform bacteria found in it. Nonetheless, efforts continue to improve the stream's water quality.
Herring Run Watershed Association
The Herring Run Watershed Association (HRWA) was founded in 1978 (originally as the Friends of Northeast Parks and Streams) and is now a fully staffed 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to stewarding the watershed. Its efforts include stream cleanups; stream plantings; rain barrel distribution; resident education; green jobs creation; advocacy, and running a native plant nursery.
In 2008, HRWA completed construction on the Herring Run Watershed Center, a state-of-the-art green building that serves as the organization's headquarters and education center. Designed by Ziger/Snead Architects and built by Baltimore Green Construction, the Watershed Center was the first LEED-NC building in Baltimore City, winning a "Gold" designation from the United States Green Building Council.
It merged with four other groups to form Blue Water Baltimore in 2010.
- U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed April 1, 2011
- Herring Run Watershed Association (HRWA). Baltimore, MD. "Learn About the Watershed." Accessed 2010-05-03.
- Maryland Department of the Environment. Baltimore, MD (2007). "Total Maximum Daily Loads of Fecal Bacteria for the Herring Run Basin in Baltimore City and Baltimore County, Maryland." June 2007.
- Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Resource Management (DEPRM), Towson, MD (2010). "Tidal Back River Small Watershed Action Plan." February 2010.
- HRWA. "Mission." Accessed 2010-05-03.
- HRWA. "Accomplishments." Accessed 2010-05-03.
- Novotney, Amy (2008). "Space: Water, Water Everywhere. The Herring Run Watershed Association’s new headquarters is both budget- and water-conscious." UrbaniteBaltimore.com, August 2008.
- Kobell, Rona (2006-09-22). "Planting the seeds for a cleaner neighborhood: Watershed group spurs grass-roots effort to tidy up community and Herring Run". Baltimore Sun.