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Projects

An Assessment of Chemical Contaminants in Sediment...

We studied the coastal waters of southwest Puerto Rico to find out what kind and how much pollution (chemical contaminants) are in sediments and corals (Porites astreoides) and how that ...

An Ecological Characterization of the Marine Resou...

We studied the coastal waters of Vieques, Puerto Rico, looking at fish and bottom-dwelling animals, contaminants in sediments and corals, and nutrient levels in surface waters. We also mapped the ...

Assessing Coral Bleaching in Four U.S. Caribbean M...

In 2005, high sea temperatures caused coral bleaching in the Caribbean. The goals of this this project were to characterize the spatial extent of coral bleaching and recovery and to ...

Assessing Societal Impacts of Harmful Macroalgae B...

We will examine how Sargassum seaweed blooms and their mitigation in the Caribbean affect multiple dimensions of social resilience, including economic impacts, human well-being, local ecological knowledge, and individual attitudes, ...

Assessment of Hurricane Impacts to Coral Reefs in ...

In 2017, major hurricanes impacted coral reefs in both Florida and Puerto Rico. We quantified these impacts using diver-based surveys, and our information was used to guide targeted emergency stabilization ...

Baseline Assessment of Contaminants and Ecological...

We studied the water contaminant levels in the bay and the coral reef ecosystems just outside to develop a baseline environmental assessment of water quality and living marine resources of ...

Baseline Assessment of Guanica Bay, Puerto Rico in...

We completed a baseline assessment of the environmental conditions in Guanica Bay, Puerto Rico, to help coastal managers identify the most appropriate restoration projects, and their effectiveness, in support of ...

Benthic Habitat Mapping in Puerto Rico and the U.S...

We conducted benthic habitat mapping of shallow-water coral reef areas off Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to inventory the coral reefs and related bottom types. Before this project, ...

Benthic Habitat Mapping of Coral Reefs in Florida,...

We are producing benthic seafloor habitat maps to help coastal managers assess, protect, and preserve the condition of coral reef ecosystems. Why We Care Coral reef ecosystems are enormously valuable ...

Benthic Habitat Mapping off Southwest Puerto Rico

We mapped the shallow-water benthic habitats of two areas off southwest Puerto Rico. This effort improves on previous NOAA benthic habitat maps by using more recent imagery, a smaller minimum ...

News

Findings Published from Second Coral Reef Socioeco...

Coral reef along the coast of Culebra, Puerto Rico. Credit: Kathleen Neeley. Since 2014, the NOAA National Coral Reef Monitoring Program socioeconomic team, which includes NCCOS researchers, has collected data ...

Advancing Ocean Planning: NOAA Hosts Key Workshops...

Two significant technical memorandum were the result of the two day workshops. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) and the NOAA National ...

2023 Caribbean National Coral Reef Monitoring Prog...

NOAA Divers Kimberly Edwards and Sophie Cook conducts Benthic Assessment and Coral Demographic surveys for NCRMP. A team of NOAA divers supporting NOAA’s National Coral Reef Monitoring Program (NCRMP) recently ...

National Coral Reef Monitoring Program Sampling in...

NOAA divers surfacing just offshore of Old San Juan. All diving operations were performed aboard the charter vessel Simply Caught 2, captained by Frank Askew. NOAA scientists are conducting surveys ...

Coral Restoration for Coastal Resilience: A Decisi...

Description of the key ecological, and hydrodynamic processes and criteria for coral restoration for coastal protection at multiple spatial scales (Viehman et al., 2023 Figure 3). Coastal hazards and the ...

Water Quality Monitoring Supports Coral Restoratio...

Nearshore waters of Culebra, Puerto Rico. Credit: D. Whitall, NCCOS. Last month, NCCOS scientists and partners began a program to monitor land-based sources of pollution that threaten coral ecosystems around ...

Owner of Puerto Rico Superfund Site Agrees to Cont...

Guánica Bay, Puerto Rico. Credit: U.S. EPA. This spring, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reached an agreement with Guanica-Caribe Land Development Corporation to remove contaminated soil from the Ochoa ...

Report Details Agency Priorities for Mapping Coral...

NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program uses seafloor mapping data to support a variety of coral reef management decisions. To efficiently allocate limited mapping resources, the program needs to prioritize which ...

Study Finds Community Structure of Mesophotic Cora...

NCCOS-supported researchers documented that mesophotic coral ecosystems (MCEs) at depths of 50 and 70 m in southwest Puerto Rico experienced significant interannual changes in community composition, demonstrating that caution should ...

Marine Benthic Algae of Puerto Rico Part I Publish...

Credit Smithsonian Contributions to Botany, Number 114. Smithsonian Scholarly Press. A new taxonomic study, “The Marine Benthic Algal Flora of Puerto Rico Part I” published by the Smithsonian Institution is ...

Products

Maps, Tools & Applications

We conducted benthic habitat mapping of shallow-water coral reef areas off Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to inventory the coral reefs and related bottom types. Such an inventory is needed for successful coral reef ecosystem management. This represents the first U.S. coral reef area to be mapped under the purview of the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force.
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Since 2004, we have been conducting seafloor mapping of the U.S. Caribbean, to fill critical informational gaps to support improved management measures in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, targeting high priority sites identified by Jurisdictional managers. This project uses NOAA ship and aircraft to collect and provide detailed information from which we can produce maps of benthic habitats.
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We mapped the shallow-water benthic habitats of two areas off southwest Puerto Rico. This effort improves on previous NOAA benthic habitat maps by using more recent imagery, a smaller minimum mapping unit, and a refined classification scheme. The new maps will support ongoing conservation and management efforts in the region, including restoration of Guánica Bay.
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The online Benthic Habitat Viewer (BHV) database, developed and managed by the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), provides easy access to a large database of underwater imagery characterizing coral reef organisms and habitats. The database holds over 9000 underwater seafloor images, taken during mapping missions from 2004-2006 in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
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This page provides access to NOAA aerial digital photos (1999 and older) from Hawaii, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.
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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 hierarchical classification scheme. This GIS tool can be used to develop habitat map products for resource analysis and management.
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BIOMappers let you interactively view data, aerial imagery, dive photography, underwater video and related publications developed for the benthic habitat mapping of many U.S. coral reefs. In addition to viewing benthic habitat data, you can examine the attributes of the data and show different thematic representations. Photos and videos taken during dive missions are linked to the location of the dives.
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BIOMappers let you interactively view data, aerial imagery, dive photography, underwater video and related publications developed for the benthic habitat mapping of many U.S. coral reefs. In addition to viewing benthic habitat data, you can examine the attributes of the data and show different thematic representations. Photos and videos taken during dive missions are linked to the location of the dives.
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BIOMappers let you interactively view data, aerial imagery, dive photography, underwater video and related publications developed for the benthic habitat mapping of many U.S. coral reefs. In addition to viewing benthic habitat data, you can examine the attributes of the data and show different thematic representations. Photos and videos taken during dive missions are linked to the location of the dives.
Project PageView Product

BIOMappers let you interactively view data, aerial imagery, dive photography, underwater video and related publications developed for the benthic habitat mapping of many U.S. coral reefs. In addition to viewing benthic habitat data, you can examine the attributes of the data and show different thematic representations. Photos and videos taken during dive missions are linked to the location of the dives.
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Data & Publications

Benthic habitat and fish community assessment, La Parguera and Guanica, Puerto Rico, 2011-2012 (NODC Accession 0104343)

These data were collected in order to 1) To spatially characterize and monitor the distribution, abundance, and size of both reef fishes and macro-invertebrates (conch, lobster, Diadema); 2) To relate this information to in-situ data collected on associated benthic composition ...

Benthic Habitat Maps for the Insular Shelf South of St. Thomas and St. John

The insular shelf south of St. Thomas and St. John, in the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) is an expansive geomorphologic feature with extensive mesophotic coral reefs occurring at 30 to 150 meter depths. These mesophotic reefs are part of a ...

Biogeographic characterization of fish and benthic communities, Jobos Bay, Puerto Rico 2009-06-08 to 2009-06-13 (NODC Accession 0125200)

The project originated from an ongoing collaboration between USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) and NOAA on the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force. The Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) was developed in 2003 by the USDA as a multi-agency effort to ...

Biogeographic characterization of fish and benthic communities, Parguera, Puerto Rico 2000-08-21 to 2009-08-21 (NODC Accession 0125202)

This fish and benthic composition database is the result of a multifaceted effort described below. The intent of this work is five fold: 1) To spatially characterize and monitor the distribution, abundance, and size of both reef fishes and macro-invertebrates ...

Biogeographic characterization of fish and benthic communities, Parguera, Puerto Rico 2010-08-10 to 2012-09-21 (NODC Accession 0125201)

This fish and benthic composition database is the result of a multifaceted effort described below. The intent of this work is five fold: 1) To spatially characterize and monitor the distribution, abundance, and size of both reef fishes and macro-invertebrates ...

Biogeographic characterization of fish and benthic communities, Vieques, Puerto Rico 2007-05-14 to 2007-05-24 (NODC Accession 0125235)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric AdministrationÕs (NOAA) Biogeography Branch, in consultation with NOAAÕs Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) and other local and regional experts, is conducting an ecological characterization of the marine ecosystem around Vieques Island, Puerto Rico. The ...

Biological, chemical, and physical data from the Phytoplankton Monitoring Network from 13 Sep 2001 to 7 Mar 2013 (NODC Accession 0117942)

The Phytoplankton Monitoring Network (PMN) is a part of the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS). The PMN was created as an outreach program to connect volunteers and professional scientists in the monitoring of marine phytoplankton and harmful algal ...

Caribbean Fishery Acoustic Assessment: Fish density data collection from NOAA Ship Nancy Foster, from 2008-03-26 to 2014-05-31 (NCEI Accession 0156395)

These data sets show acoustically detected fish densities throughout the Caribbean ocean. NOAA/NCCOS collected these data sets to help characterize broad-scale fish abundance, biomass, and understand temporal behavior. Acoustic data was collected aboard NOAA Ship Nancy Foster using 120-7C splitbeam ...

Characterizing Jobos Bay, Puerto Rico: A watershed modeling analysis and monitoring plan

Progress report on partnership between USDA and NOAA's National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), Center for Coastal Monitoring and Assessment (CCMA) established by the Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) in the Jobos Bay watershed. Discusses sediment and pollutant predictions ...

Contaminants in Marine Resources of Vieques, Puerto Rico

Pollution in the marine environment has the potential to negatively impact ecosystem health, including adverse effects on fisheries species. This can occur through direct impacts, food web effects and habitat degradation. Vieques is an island municipality of the Commonwealth of ...

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