Chesapeake Bay tidal waters support spawning areas and juvenile nurseries for a host of anadromous and semi-anadromous fish, such as striped bass and shad. These fish are important not only to Chesapeake Bay fishery populations, but also to those of the entire East Coast. The eggs, larvae and early juveniles of anadromous and semi-anadromous species often have more sensitive habitat quality requirements than other species and life stages. Waters with the Migratory Fish Spawning & Nursery designated use support the survival, growth and propagation of balanced indigenous populations of ecologically, recreationally and commercially important anadromous, semi-anadromous and tidal-fresh resident fish species inhabiting spawning and nursery grounds from February 1 through May 31.