Projects Explorer

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

Can Oyster Aquaculture in the Chesapeake Bay Flourish Under Future Environmental and Economic Conditions?

We are supporting research that will explore how the Eastern oyster will grow and survive under future environmental conditions and determine if there are environmental or economic thresholds (“tipping points”) that might limit profitability for the oyster industry. Why We Care The shellfish aquaculture industry is growing globally and in ...
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Capacity Building for Design and Analysis of Fishery-independent Surveys of Reef fishes in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands

Over 50 species of reef fish are captured by commercial and recreational fishermen in the U.S. Caribbean. Many of these species use reef habitats that are deeper than 35 meters. Local managers are concerned about whether these species are being fished sustainably. However, they have little information about these species ...
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Caribbean Coral Reef Ecosystem Monitoring Project

We are monitoring the distribution, abundance, and size of reef fishes and macro-invertebrates and mapping habitats in the Caribbean. The work from this long-term project will help coastal managers understand what natural resources exist inside and outside the marine protected area boundaries and the condition of these resources so they ...
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Caribbean Hotspot of Biodiversity: Ecological Characterization of Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve, U.S. Virgin Islands

We gathered a time series of aerial photographs, mapped coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrasses, and summarized previous ecological studies into a descriptive report for use by scientists and resource managers. Why We Care The National Park Service Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve (SARI) in the U.S ...
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Causes and Consequences of Cell Death in the Toxic Dinoflagellate Alexandrium tamarense

Numerous studies have increased understanding of processes that lead to algal bloom initiation, growth, and transport but little is known about the causes of bloom decline and termination. Preliminary results suggest toxic Alexandrium may initiate programmed cell death in response to nutrient stress. A hypothesis is that an internal cell ...
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Causes and Consequences of Hypoxic Events in Low-inflow Estuaries in Southern California

We are investigating the processes that lead to hypoxia in Southern California’s lagoons, and identifying its ecological impacts. These small estuaries, which have tidal inlets that can close to the sea, play roles in coastal protection, nutrient removal, and habitat provisioning. Hypoxia is a primary stressor in these lagoons, leading ...
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Changes to Non-market Values Associated with Changes in Natural Resource Attributes for the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary

The coast of Washington is home to diverse marine and intertidal communities valued for their aesthetic and recreational benefits. Our work improved understanding about how the value of these ecosystem benefits may change if natural resources degrade or improve with new management approaches, helping resource managers better sustain and improve ...
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Characterization of an Algicidal Agent Produced by the Bacterium Shewanella

We examined a biological control agent isolated from a bacteria species that may provide a mechanism for halting the growth of certain types of toxic dinoflagellate harmful algal blooms. We characterized the activity of the algicidal agent and its impact on dinoflagellate physiology. We also evaluated the effect of the ...
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Characterization of Benthic Habitats and Contaminant Assessment in Arctic Lagoons and Estuaries

We conducted an environmental characterization of lagoons and estuaries in northwest Alaska prior to oil and gas development in the region. Our results will provide natural resource managers and residents in the area baseline information on the state of biological resources and contaminants in Arctic lagoons and estuaries in the ...
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Characterization of Land-Based Sources of Pollution and Effects in the St. Thomas East End Reserves (STEER)

We assessed the condition of the St. Thomas East End Reserves, establishing a baseline from which we can evaluate the effectiveness of restoration activities. This is the first reserve-wide integrated ecological assessment that includes chemical contaminants in sediments, coral, fish, and conch; toxicity of sediments; nutrient levels; and sedimentation rates, ...
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Characterization of Toxin Synthesis Pathways in Toxic Dinoflagellates

During the past 25 years, the abundance, range, and variety of harmful algal blooms (HABs) and their toxins have been increasing, impacting human and marine animal health through consumption of contaminated shellfish, finfish, and water or aerosol exposure. HAB dinoflagellate algae make some of the most potent toxins on Earth, ...
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Characterizing and Mapping Essential Fish Habitats Affected by Human Activities off Puerto Rico

The purpose of this project was to collect, integrate and map available information on the features of essential fish habitats in protected and non-protected marine areas around the islands of Puerto Rico. The information obtained will help: 1) describe and select habitats for monitoring impacts of fishing and non-fishing activities, ...
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Characterizing Benthic Habitats Around Saipan, CNMI to Support RICHARD Campaign

In 2019, NOAA launched the Pacific Mapping Cooperative: RICHARD (Rainier Integrates Charting Hydrography and Reef Demographics) Marianas Campaign to develop a plan to conduct much-needed mapping in the Marianas Archipelago. NCCOS was requested to generate contemporary, high-resolution shallow water benthic habitat maps for select areas off Saipan, which is the ...
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Characterizing Benthic Habitats in Haputo Ecological Reserve Area, Guam

In 2012, the US Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Marianas developed an Integrated Natural Resource Management Plan (INRMP) for the Joint Region Marianas (JRM). The purpose of this plan is to mitigate impacts of the US Navy’s mission on submerged lands under their control and develop functioning, sustainable ecological communities ...
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Characterizing Fish and Invertebrates of the Shallow Coral Reefs of the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary

We characterized the coral and fish communities on the sanctuary’s shallow reefs based on data collected in 2006 and 2007. We focused on two management goals: 1) to develop a sampling design for monitoring benthic fish communities on the coral reefs; and 2) to obtain a spatial and quantitative biogeographic ...
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Characterizing Potential Distributions of Deep-Sea Corals, Sponges, and Macrofauna Offshore of the U.S. West Coast

We developed spatial predictive models for deep-sea corals, sponges, and benthic macrofauna offshore of the continental U.S. West Coast. Maps and geospatial data depicting the predicted spatial distributions of these organisms can be used in regional ocean planning efforts and assessments for offshore energy, ground fishing, conservation, and other activities ...
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Characterizing Recreational Shore-based Fishers and Fishing on St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands

The objective of our survey on St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands was to test an approach for collecting shore-based recreational fishing data, such as who fishes from shore, for how long, and what they catch. We were interested in understanding the spatial and temporal patterns of shore-based fishing, as well ...
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Characterizing Spatial Distributions of Deep-sea Corals and Chemosynthetic Communities in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico

We compiled observations of deep-sea corals and chemosynthetic communities from field surveys and developed spatial predictive models for these organisms and habitats in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. Maps and geospatial data depicting the observed and predicted distributions of these organisms and habitats can be used to inform environmental risk ...
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Characterizing Spatial Distributions of Deep-sea Corals and Hardbottom Habitats in the U.S. Southeast Atlantic

We are compiling observations of deep-sea corals and hardbottom habitats from field surveys and developing spatial predictive models for these organisms and habitats in the U.S. Southeast Atlantic. Maps and geospatial data depicting the observed and predicted distributions of these organisms and habitats will be used to inform environmental risk ...
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Characterizing Submerged Lands around Navy Base Guam, CNMI

In 2012, the U.S. Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Marianas developed a resource plan for the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI). The purpose of this plan is to mitigate impacts of the U.S. Navy’s mission on submerged lands under their control. NAVFAC requested that NCCOS develop an updated ...
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Chesapeake Bay Climate Sensitivity Assessment

The Chesapeake Bay is one of the largest estuaries in the world, economically valuable for its productive habitats, valuable fisheries, and recreational opportunities. However, it is clear that climate changes will influence this important coastal ecosystem. We are using the Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve System and historical data ...
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NCCOS delivers ecosystem science solutions for stewardship of the nation’s ocean and coastal resources to sustain thriving coastal communities and economies.

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