Projects Explorer

The NCCOS Project Explorer provides a snapshot of our official, discrete lines of research. Filter by research category, region or contact.

Applied Ecophysiology of Marine Aquaculture Species to Understand Environmental Interactions

Forecasting environmental interactions of marine aquaculture activities requires an in-depth understanding of the environment and the species farmed. We are investigating two promising candidates for marine aquaculture: red porgy and vermilion snapper. Like many fish within the Snapper–Grouper Complex of the South Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico, these two ...
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Aquaculture and Eutrophication in Long Island Sound and Great Bay – Piscataqua Estuary

Eutrophication is the overabundance of nutrients in a body of water that results in harmful algal blooms, fish kills, and in some cases ecosystem collapse. We are investigating the feasibility of using shellfish to filter out excessive nutrients in the Piscataqua estuary. Using models, field data, and input from stakeholders, ...
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Aquaculture Mapping Atlas and FARM Model

We are integrating two tools commonly used to plan for and site aquaculture: the Farm Aquaculture Resource Management (FARM) Model and the Connecticut Aquaculture Mapping Atlas. This improved tool will help identify the places where aquaculture is compatible with other human uses and where adverse effects on wild species, habitat, ...
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AquaSpace – An Ecosystem Approach to Making Space for Sustainable Aquaculture

Aquaculture is a large and growing segment of seafood production because capture fisheries production continues to decline. A major challenge to the expansion of marine aquaculture in most nations is siting and subsequent expansion of aquaculture operations. We are developing tools to address spatial planning issues relating to aquaculture in ...
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Are Growth and Toxicity of the Dinoflagellate Alexandrium Controlled by Grazer-Induced Defense?

Blooms of Alexandrium fundyense result in economic losses to fisheries, aquaculture, and pose public health risks. Typically, A. fundyense growth and toxicity are seen as dependent on light, temperature, and nutrients. New evidence shows that grazers (copepods, bivalves, sea squirts) induce toxin production and decrease growth rate. The tradeoff between ...
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Are Marine Protected Areas Working in the U.S. Virgin Islands?

We used a decade of underwater monitoring data to evaluate the effectiveness of no-take and partial-take Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) located in the U.S. Virgin Islands in the context of differing levels of enforcement and compliance. Results will provide managers with a status report that can guide management actions and ...
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Assessing Biogeography, Conditions, and Marine Protected Area Efficacy in the Dry Tortugas

In 2001, state and federal agencies established the Tortugas Ecological Reserve to protect extensive unspoiled shallow-water coral reefs that support a wide variety of marine life off the Florida Keys. The objectives of our project were to assess: the seafloor habitat and reef fishes of the reserve, the effectiveness of ...
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Assessing Coral Bleaching in Four U.S. Caribbean Managed Areas

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 monitor the effects of bleaching on coral reef ecosystems in four managed areas of the Caribbean. Why We Care Coral ...
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Assessing Land Based Sources of Pollution in Tinian, Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands

Coral reefs are diverse, productive, and economically valuable ecosystem, but are threatened by a variety of stressors in including land based sources of pollution, such as nutrients, pesticide, heavy metals and sedimentation. The island of Tinian (CNMI) has a unique land use history that includes military activities, tourism and low ...
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Assessing Social Values Relative to Offshore Wind Energy Areas in North & South Carolina

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM’s) Office of Renewable Energy Programs oversees development of offshore renewable energy projects on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). BOEM identified wind energy areas (WEAs) on the OCS of North Carolina, and was in the process of locating WEAs in South Carolina. To inform ...
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Assessing the Ecological Function of Shipwrecks, Artificial Reefs and Rocky Reefs on the Southeastern U.S. Continental Shelf

Increased calls for enhancing ocean habitats through artificial reefs and proposals for increasing offshore energy development require science to understand the impact and habitat value of these artificial structures on marine ecosystems. Harnessing technologies, including fishery echosounders and remotely-operated vehicles, we collect and synthesize data on fish communities, benthic communities, ...
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Assessing the Geographic Variability in Vulnerability to Climate Change and Coastal Risks in Los Angeles County

Coastal communities are increasingly vulnerable to climate effects, such as sea level rise and coastal erosion. To address these and other changing coastal risks in Los Angeles County, NCCOS researchers extended their Integrated Vulnerability Assessment Framework to this densely populated and highly urbanized region, coupled with further spatial and economic ...
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Assessing the Social and Cultural Importance of Subsistence Salmon in Alaska in the Context of the Natural Resource Damages Assessment Process

We are developing and validating a survey to measure the social and cultural importance of subsistence salmon harvest and use in Alaska. In the event of an oil spill or other hazard, NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration can use our protocol to assess socio-cultural losses and develop restoration plans ...
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Assessing the Threat of Hypoxia to Coral Reefs

We are examining the impact of low-oxygen (hypoxia) stress on coral reef ecosystems. Coral reefs are in decline, and human-assisted restoration is actively trying to reverse this trend. Our project will help improve the ability of coral reef managers and coral restoration practitioners to identify and understand the effects of ...
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Assessment of Chemical Contaminants in Sediments and Biota from Cocos Lagoon, Guam

Funded by NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program (CRCP), the goal of this project is to quantify the extent of chemical contamination in sediments and fish in Cocos Lagoon, Guam. Significant chemical contaminant issues have been identified in the area of Cocos Island, as a result of past land use activities ...
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Assessment of Chemical Contaminants in Sediments from the Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve (SARI), St. Croix, USVI

There is concern about chemical contaminants in the Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve (SARI). In 2014, the USVI Department of Planning and Natural Resources (DPNR) and the National Park Service (NPS) requested NCCOS conduct a chemical contaminants and bioeffects assessment there. Working with local partners DPNR ...
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Assessment of Dredged Material Created Habitat in the South Atlantic Bight

Summary: We characterized the habitat formed by dredge material disposed in sites designated by the EPA offshore of Fernandina Beach, FL using SCUBA assessments, multibeam mapping, and hydroacoustic sampling of the fish community. The data was used to assess the value of the habitat informing future placement and disposal strategies ...
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Assessment of Hurricane Impacts to Coral Reefs in Florida and Puerto Rico

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 of corals affected by the hurricanes. The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation in Florida and the Federal Emergency Management Agency ...
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Assessment of Hydrocarbon Carryover Potential for Six Field Cleaning Protocols

The logistics of sample collection in the field can be very challenging. NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration requested assistance in determining the potential for oil-based pollution carryover between sampling collections. We studied the efficacy of six commonly used field cleaning protocols on two different sediment types that were contaminated ...
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Assessment of the Beneficial Use of Dredged Sediment to Restore Mordecai Island, New Jersey

Navigation channels across the country require regular maintenance dredging to avoid infilling with sediments and becoming impassible. In an experimental strategy that is often referred to as “beneficial use,” sediments removed during maintenance dredging operations can be used to support the creation and enhancement of local coastal habitats, making these ...
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Assessment of the Short- and Long-Term Socioeconomic Impacts of Florida’s 2017-2019 Red Tide Event

This project will comprehensively quantify and qualify the short- and long-term socioeconomic impacts of the 2017-2019 Karenia brevis event in Florida. It will also develop a transferable framework to inform national-scale efforts to quantify the socioeconomic impacts and measure community resiliency to harmful algal blooms. Why We Care Several red ...
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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
1305 East West Highway, Rm 8110
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: (240) 533-0300 / Fax: (301) 713-4353

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