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Regional Water Management Practices Reduce Biscayne Bay Submerged Aquatic Vegetation

In subtropical Biscayne Bay, Florida, NCCOS research reveals decades of water management practices reduce freshwater flow, negatively impacting abundance and composition of the bay’s nearshore submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) communities, fish, and crustaceans. Over the last 50 years, a massive water management system modified the hydrology of the South Florida watershed by altering the quantity, […]

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Reef Fish Movements Tracked in USVI Monument to Assess Boundary Effectiveness

NCCOS and National Park Service (NPS) researchers are evaluating the boundaries of the Virgin Islands Coral Reef National Monument in Coral Bay, St. John relative to the home range of reef fish that the monument was conceived, in part, to protect. The team has tracked reef fish movements using surgically implanted acoustic transmitters and an […]

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NCCOS Increases the Sonar Survey Accuracy of the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer

To ensure consistency in the quality of scientific echosounder and sonar data being collected by NOAA research ships, NCCOS has partnered with the Office of Exploration and Research to calibrate the scientific echosounder on the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer.  Researchers from NCCOS joined the Okeanos in Puerto Rico to conduct the calibration and train the […]

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Mesophotic Habitats Are a Refuge for Large, Overfished Species in Southwest Puerto Rico

NCCOS-supported research found that commercially important fish, such as snappers and groupers, off southwest Puerto Rico are more abundant at mesophotic depths (60–80 meters) than shallow depths (30 meters or less). The study, published in the journal Coral Reefs, suggests that mesophotic coral ecosystems serve as a refuge for heavily exploited, shallow-water reef species and […]

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Pulley Ridge Corals Show Potential Signs of Recovery After 10-Year Decline

An NCCOS-funded study has produced a detailed characterization of the deep (60–80 meters), mesophotic reefs and fish populations of Pulley Ridge, located off the southwest coast of Florida. While the study shows a decade-long decrease in coral cover at Pulley Ridge, when compared with data collected by the U.S. Geological Survey in 2003, the findings […]

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Coral Reef Resilience and Research Consistency Addressed at Recent Workshop

NCCOS scientists shared knowledge gained from coral reef research and conservation efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands with researchers at a workshop in Hawaii with the aim of improving the quality and consistency of coral reef research worldwide. The workshop’s goals included bringing together reef researchers and managers who are facing new challenges due to […]

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Innovative Management Approach Guides Marine Spatial Planning

NCCOS has developed an innovative decision support process, the Biogeographic Assessment Framework (BAF), for comprehensive and efficient management of coastal and marine environments around the world.  Two decades of close collaborations with scientists and marine resource managers have resulted in a tool that integrates multiple types of information, such as resource use and ecosystem characterization […]

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‘Coral Ecosystem Connectivity 2014′ Expedition Discovers New Coral Area in Gulf of Mexico

NOAA-sponsored scientists discovered a new coral area off the southwest coast of Florida near Pulley Ridge. The area is extensive and has the densest cover of plate corals (Agaricia spp.) known in the Gulf of Mexico. This is the most coral seen in the Pulley Ridge area since 2009. Scientists made the discovery in August […]

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