Tag: Integrated Ecosystem Assessment Stories

Integrated Ecosystem Assessment Stories

Florida Keys Integrated Assessment Team Launches New Ecosystem Status Report Web Tool

The Florida Keys Integrated Assessment (IEA) team, led by AOML in partnership with managers and scientists from the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, launched a new Ecosystem Status Report web tool on May 13th. The IEA approach aims to balance the needs of nature and society through Ecosystem-Based Management. It provides scientific knowledge of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary ecosystem to scientists, policy makers and resource managers. 

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Study shows nutrients entering Biscayne Bay

An analysis of 20 years of water quality data shows that Biscayne Bay, a NOAA Habitat Focus Area off southeast Florida, is degrading, as scientists have identified early warning signs that could help inform managers to prevent a regime shift of the bay’s ecosystem.In a recent study published in Estuaries and Coasts, scientists from NOAA and partner organizations detected an increasing trend in chlorophyll and nutrient levels from 48 monitoring stations throughout Biscayne Bay.

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New Cruise Studies Red Tide Impacts in South Florida

AOML recently led a multi-agency (NOAA/AOML, NOAA/SEFSC, State of Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, NOAA/NESDIS, University of South Florida, MOTE Marine Laboratory and Aquarium, and University of Miami) research cruise to study the effects of Southwest Florida’s ongoing red tide. To address such a complex problem as red tide, the cruise brought together a diverse team of experts consisting of commercial fishermen, oceanographers, systems ecologist, phytoplankton ecologist, and fish population biologist. This cruise allowed researchers to take a holistic approach to characterize the extent of the red tide and its impacts. The goal of the cruise was to understand why these blooms happen to better inform effective future response measures and hopefully improve Florida’s resilience to these coastal events. 

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Cruising for Conservation: Restoring Florida’s Water Quality

 In August 2018, a team of biological oceanographers and ecologists set sail on the R/V Walton Smith to sample the waters of Biscayne Bay & Florida Bay. AOML has conducted regular interdisciplinary observations of south Florida coastal waters since the early 1990’s. We spoke with Chris Keble, the lead scientist for AOML’s South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Research project, to learn more.

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New Year, Continued Restoration and Monitoring

AOML scientists recently returned from the first cruise of 2018. As part of the South Florida Project, regional surveys over the southwest Florida shelf and the Florida Keys reef tract are routinely performed aboard the R/V F.G. Walton Smith on a bimonthly basis, to keep a watchful eye over sensitive marine habitats found in the region. Sampling methodologies include discrete sampling and flow through measurements of water quality and chemistry, and biological oceanographic parameters.

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Juvenile Sportfish Monitoring in the Florida Bay

With an average depth of only 3 feet, the Florida Bay is home to a number of marine populations, as well as a vital nursery ground for commercial and recreational reef fish species. The Florida Bay also plays host to a group of NOAA researchers who are investigating how habitat changes in Florida Bay are impacting juvenile sportfish populations, with a focus on the spotted seatrout.

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AOML Conducts Water Quality Monitoring in Florida Bay

AOML scientists aboard the R/V F.G. Walton Smith conducted the bimonthly water quality research cruise in support of the South Florida Project during the week of September 21st. The AOML South Florida Project (SFP), and its associated field operations, have enabled scientists and resource managers to keep a watchful eye on the sensitive marine habitats found in the region and have served as a sentinel during periods when the ecosystem has been subjected to extreme events such as hurricanes, harmful algal blooms (HAB), and more recently, potential oil spill contaminants. Additionally, the AOML SFP has produced a comprehensive, long-term baseline regarding regional circulation, salinity, water quality, and biology for the ecosystem.

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Scientists Conduct Juvenile Sport Fish Surveys in Florida Bay

A team of scientists from NOAA’s AOML and Southeast Fisheries Science Center have conducted a series of surveys in Florida Bay this year as part of an ongoing project to investigate how juvenile sport fish in the bay respond to changes in water quality and habitat resulting from Everglades restoration. During the survey, scientists collected water quality and seagrass measurements and conducted otter trawls to sample the juvenile sport fish populations.

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NOAA Selects Biscayne Bay for Next Habitat Blueprint Focus Area

NOAA has selected South Florida’s Biscayne Bay as one of the next Habitat Focus Areas under NOAA’s Habitat Blueprint. Habitat Blueprint offers opportunities for NOAA to partner with organizations to address coastal and marine habitat loss and degradation issues. It provides a framework, which builds upon existing programs, prioritizes activities, and helps users act strategically and preventively [...]
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