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NCCOS Shorelines Research Featured on NOAA Chesapeake Bay Website

Managers and policy makers concerned about shoreline hardening in the Mid-Atlantic region can now find pertinent research results summarized in an accessible document. NCCOS supported a multi-partner project conducted from 2009 to 2015 to investigate the ecological effects of hardened shorelines, watershed development and invasive marsh grass species on nearshore ecosystems. The NOAA Chesapeake Bay […]

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Small Fish Could Be In Big Trouble Without Wetlands

Coastal population growth and a desire to guard against sea level rise and coastal erosion has led to extensive conversions of natural wetlands and beaches to bulkheads and riprap. A new NCCOS-funded study recently published in Estuaries and Coasts explores how these changes are affecting fish and crustaceans in nearshore areas of Chesapeake Bay. Across all species, small […]

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A Primer to Living Shorelines Published

A synthesis of recent thinking and results from practitioners and researchers of Living Shorelines just hit the stands. “Living Shorelines: The Science and Management of Nature-Based Coastal Protection,” details many aspects of the shoreline stabilization approach, and specifically includes: (1) background: history and evolution; (2) management, policy, and design; (3) synthesis of Living Shoreline science: physical […]

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Tiny yet Toxic: Dinoflagellate Karlodinium veneficum

Relatively unknown and taxonomically confusing until the last few decades, the tiny but toxic dinoflagellate, Karlodinium veneficum, can produce dense blooms and fish-killing toxins. K. veneficum is a small chlorophyll-containing dinoflagellate that produces a suite of potent toxic compounds known as karlotoxins which kill fish as well as other organisms. K. veneficum has a mixed nutritional mode […]

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Shellfish Larvae Struggle in Fluctuating Oxygen and Acidity in Estuaries

A study supported by NCCOS and the NOAA Ocean Acidification Program found that interacting effects of acidified and low oxygen (hypoxic) waters reduced the survival, growth, and development of larval stages of three important shellfish species: bay scallops, hard clams and eastern oysters. Shellfish larvae were exposed to ideal, acidified and low oxygen conditions both individually and in […]

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Living Shorelines Provide Better Fish Habitats

In many places, estuarine shorelines are protected from erosion by riprap–a jumble of rock and other hard materials piled along the shore. More recently, living shorelines¯ have become the focus of study as an alternative approach that preserves ecological function as well as providing shoreline protection. For example, riprap-sill structures are a type of living shoreline¯ combining a rock […]

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NCCOS Studies Shoreline Cleaner Effects on Crude Oil

NCCOS scientists recently used tidal estuarine simulation units (mesocosms) to study the crude oil-removal efficiency of shoreline cleaners and the potential impacts of removed oil on an estuary. Oil spills that occur in estuaries, bays, or enclosed harbors have the potential to contaminate docks, bulkheads, ship hulls, and sensitive estuarine habitat. Depending on the situation […]

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Keeping Up With Rising Seas

Scientists predicted wetland soil accretion (or growth) rates in relation to predicted sea level rise using a model and data from numerous tidal salt and freshwater wetlands around the United States. The model results, published in Earth’s Future, suggested that, on average, softer organic components of East Coast marsh sediments do not accrete  fast enough in volume and height […]

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