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NOAA Scientists Develop First Comprehensive Habitat Maps for National Parks Service’s Buck Island Reef National Monument

Published on: 02/01/2012
Research Area(s): Marine Spatial Ecology

Last week, scientists from NCCOSreleased new habitat maps for Buck Island Reef National Monument (BIRNM) describing thegeology and biology of the seafloor from 0 to 1,830 meters (m) in depth. These maps were developedusing a combination of manual and computer-based mapping methods, which integrated remotely-sensed images acquired by six different sensors.

This effort marks the first time that habitats deeperthan about 30m have been characterized inside BIRNM. These never before available maps providenew information to local scientists and a baseline to resource managers for monitoring and managingmesophotic (mid-light) and deep-water coral reef ecosystems.

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