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Projects

EcoGIS: Tools for Ecosystem-based Fisheries Manage...

The EcoGIS project was launched to determine how geographic information systems (GIS) technology, marine data, and custom analysis tools could be leveraged to promote fishery management strategies based on the ...
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Ecological Assessment for Kachemak Bay, Alaska: Sc...

Kachemak Bay, a microcosm representing all of the estuarine and coastal habitats found in the Gulf of Alaska, has shown signs of reduced environmental integrity in recent years. Our ecological ...
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Ecological Characterization of Stellwagen Bank Nat...

We provided an ecological and oceanographic profile of the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary and Gulf of Maine region, including analysis of pollution levels. The project was designed to help ...
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Extending Seafloor Mapping Products to Include Hab...

We are providing improved seafloor mapping data products for regions of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary deeper than 20 meters. Along with the mapping products, we will create an ...
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Habitat Digitizer Extension

The Habitat Digitizer Extension is a GIS tool that was developed to delineate features by visually interpreting georeferenced images and also to select attributes using a dialog containing a custom ...
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Habitat Mapping of Fish Bay, Coral Bay, and the St...

We developed benthic habitat maps for shallow-water (< 40 meters) areas in and around Fish Bay, Coral Bay, and the St. Thomas East End Reserve in the U.S. Virgin Islands ...
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Improving Species Distribution and Seafloor Maps t...

Our work provided the state of Washington and the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary with new information to prioritize seafloor mapping, and to better understand seabird, pinniped and cetacean distributions ...
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Investigating Mesophotic Coral Reefs in Hawaii

We investigated Hawaii’s mesophotic coral ecosystems to better understand them and their relationship to shallower reefs. We found reefs off Maui’s southwestern coast at depths of 30–130 meters (98–426 ft) ...
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Lakebed Mapping and Assessing Ecological Resources...

Bathymetric model of clay outcrops on the lakebed off Wisconsin in Lake Michigan. Model by NOAA Biogeography Branch. We are working with NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and local ...
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Lakebed Mapping in Thunder Bay National Marine San...

NCCOS, in close collaboration with sanctuary partners, will map high-priority areas of lakebed within the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Why We Care NCCOS scientists and partners hold a side ...
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News

NCCOS Tests Drones to Map Coastline and Nearshore ...

In December, NCCOS scientists and their partners used both airborne and water surface drones to map land elevations and water depths around Santa Cruz Island, the largest of the Channel ...
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Highlights of Southeast Deep Coral Initiative in 2...

A map showing 173 ROV and submersible dives completed in FY18 in the U.S. west Atlantic, as part of the NOAA Southeast Deep Coral Initiative, or SEDCI. Credit: NOAA The ...
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USVI, Puerto Rico Coral Data Collected in 2016–201...

Divers collect benthic data on St. John, USVI, reef during 2017 NCRMP mission. Credit: NOAA. Diver surveys fish community on patch reef in Puerto Rico during 2017 NCRMP season. Credit: ...
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NCCOS Supports Research Expedition in Gray’s Reef ...

Scientists place coral on plates adjacent to carbon dioxide sensors to study ocean acidification in Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary, 2018. Credit: NOAA. Earlier this month, NCCOS staff provided diving ...
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Coral Surveys Inform Expansion of Pulley Ridge Hab...

UPDATE: October 16, 2020 NOAA Fisheries announced the final rule implementing Amendment 9 to the Fishery Management Plan for Coral and Coral Reef Resources in Gulf of Mexico U.S. waters, ...
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Exploring Puerto Rican Reef Habitats from NOAA Shi...

High-definition ROV photos of Swiftia exserta, seen here in the white polyp morphotype. Credit: NOAA A scientific mission on the NOAA Ship Nancy Foster from June 25 to July 7, ...
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First Observations of Seeps, Shipwrecks, Species R...

This spring, scientists completed a 23-day expedition aboard NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer, collecting data on poorly understood deep-sea habitats in the Gulf of Mexico. The researchers used remotely operated vehicles ...
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NOAA Evaluates Using Drones to Map Coastline and N...

Last month, NCCOS scientists and their partners tested the utility of drone technology to map the coastline and nearshore waters of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The team evaluated ...
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Report Documents State of Deep-sea Coral and Spong...

Red tree coral with a school of juvenile Pacific cod. Credit: NOAA A new NOAA report, State of Deep-Sea Coral and Sponge Ecosystems of the United States, explains advances in deep-sea coral ...
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NCCOS Completes Mapping, Plans Ground Truthing of ...

In October 2017, NCCOS scientists collected full coverage high-resolution multibeam bathymetry, backscatter intensity, and split-beam fishery acoustics data in the New York Wind Energy Area, a proposed offshore wind power ...
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Products

Maps, Tools & Applications

This digital atlas, supporting the proposed Wisconsin – Lake Michigan National Marine Sanctuary, shows the location of cultural resources, environmental research and monitoring, and human activities. It allows managers, stakeholders, and the general public to see the location of important lake resources and how these resources are distributed relative to one another. The atlas was created to identify data gaps, help prioritize future lakebed surveys, and support a better understanding of the Lake Michigan ecosystem.
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Data & Publications

Defining reef fish habitat utilization patterns in Hawaii: comparisons between marine protected areas and areas open to fishing

Over the past 4 decades, Hawaii has developed a system of Marine Life Conservation Districts (MLCDs) to conserve and replenish marine resources. These MLCDs vary in size, habitat quality, and management regimes, providing an excellent opportunity to test hypotheses concerning ...
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Depth specialization in mesophotic corals (Leptoseris spp.) and associated algal symbionts in Hawaii

Corals at the lower limits of mesophotic habitats are likely to have unique photosynthetic adaptations that allow them to persist and dominate in these extreme low light ecosystems. We examined the host–symbiont relationships from the dominant coral genus Leptoseris in ...
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Distribution of deep-water corals, sponges, and demersal fisheries landings in Southern California, USA: implications for conservation priorities

Deep-sea corals in Southern California are diverse and abundant but subject to multiple stressors, including bottom-contact fisheries using mobile and fixed gear. There is a need for more information on the distribution of these taxa in relation to the distribution ...
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EcoGIS – GIS Tools for Ecosystem Approaches to Fisheries Management

The EcoGIS project was launched in September 2004 to investigate how Geographic Information Systems (GIS), marine data, and custom analysis tools can better enable fisheries scientists and managers to adopt Ecosystem Approaches to Fisheries Management (EAFM). EcoGIS is a collaborative ...
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Ecological Assessment of Wisconsin – Lake Michigan

This report is an assessment of key physical, chemical, and biological attributes that influence the natural and cultural resources of western mid-lake Lake Michigan. It is a synthesis of existing scientific literature and a collection of new ecological data that ...
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Ecophysiology of mesophotic reef-building corals in Hawai’i is influenced by symbiont-host associations, photoacclimatization, trophic plasticity, and adaptation

Mesophotic reef corals remain largely unexplored in terms of the genetic adaptations and physiological mechanisms to acquire, allocate, and use energy for survival and reproduction. In the Hawaiian Archipelago, the Leptoseris species complex form the most spatially extensive mesophotic coral ...
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Expedition Report: 2017 Southeast Deep Coral Initiative (SEDCI) expedition aboard NOAA Ship Nancy Foster (NF-17-08: August 12-31, 2017)

On August 12-31, 2017 the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) led a research expedition aboard NOAA Ship Nancy Foster supported by NOAA’s Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program (DSCRTP) through the Southeast Deep Coral Initiative (SEDCI). The ...
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Fish assemblages and benthic habitats of Buck Island Reef National Monument (St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands) and the surrounding seascape: A characterization of spatial and temporal patterns

Report provides a spatial and temporal characterization of Buck Island Reef National Monument and the surrounding seascapes of northeastern St. Croix, US Virgin Islands. The project is a component of NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program and the National Park Service ...
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Fish Habitat Utilization Patterns and Evaluation of the Efficacy of Marine Protected Areas in Hawaii: Integration of NOAA Digital Benthic Habitat Mapping and Coral Reef Ecological Studies

Over the past four decades, the state of Hawaii has developed a system of eleven Marine Life Conservation Districts (MLCDs) to conserve and replenish marine resources around the state. Initially established to provide opportunities for public interaction with the marine ...
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Fluorescent proteins in dominant mesophotic reef-building corals

Reef-building corals inhabiting the mesophotic zone (30-150 m) not only survive but thrive in light-limiting environments. Similar to shallow corals, mesophotic corals also exhibit coral fluorescence. Because fluorescent proteins (FPs) absorb high-energy light and emit lower-energy light, FPs could play ...
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NCCOS delivers ecosystem science solutions for stewardship of the nation’s ocean and coastal resources, in direct support of NOS priorities, offices, and customers, and to sustain thriving coastal communities and economies.

National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science
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Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: (240) 533-0300 / Fax: (301) 713-4353
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