Here are about 80 of the several hundred ducks observed in the South Sailing Basin on December 4 2001.
The South Sailing Basin is also home to two large year-round community sailing programs and is a popular launch spot for windsurfers and kayaks. There are two boat hoists and three docks, and a dry storage facility for larger boats.
The important point here is that relatively intense non-motorized boating activity seems to have minimal negative impact on the winter habitat value of this body of water.
Loss of vital diving duck habitat has often been cited as a reason to oppose non-motorized boating in the North Sailing Basin. Significant loss of habitat due to this kind of activity, however, does not appear to be likely for at least three reasons: 1) the rafting habitat is distributed throughout the waters of the Eastshore State Park, and not concentrated in the North Sailing Basin. 2) The South Sailing Basin remains a popular rafting habitat despite the presence of boating facilities, and 3) boating use patterns, especially in winter, involve a small portion of time and use a small portion of the available water, leaving most of the habitat totally undisturbed most of the time.