NERRS Data—Protecting Your Day at the Beach

NERRS Data—Protecting Your Day at the Beach

 

Sunscreen and umbrella? Check. Trashy novel? Of course. Water quality monitoring data to predict whether it’s safe to swim at the beach? Well, that may not be on everyone’s packing list for the summer, but it’s an essential item for agencies that must post advisories about whether it’s safe to swim at the local beach.

Around the country, reserves maintain more than 110 water quality monitoring stations and 30 weather stations that collect data every 15 minutes. In the Southeast, this data helps public health agencies and local governments monitor bacteria levels at swimming beaches.

Recently, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control used data from the North Inlet-Winyah Bay and North Carolina reserves to develop an automated, database-driven tool that estimates bacteria levels and creates predictive visualizations that inform beach advisories. This effort will incorporate Rookery Bay Reserve data when it extends to the southwest coast of Florida this year.

 

Mid-Atlantic Reserves Serve up 30 Years of Fisheries Data

Mid-Atlantic Reserves Serve up 30 Years of Fisheries Data

Analysis of 30 years’ worth of larval fish samples from three research reserves is now available through www.SEAMAP.org

Fisheries management decisions throughout the Mid-Atlantic are benefiting from this information. It helps them expand their understanding of current conditions and changes, including the relative abundance of species and community composition.

The project also broadened the impact of the reserves’ system-wide environmental monitoring data by integrating these data with the fisheries data. For example, the two data sets together allow researchers to analyze larval winter flounder data relative to climate change.

The Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve, in partnership with Rutgers University and Reserves in the Carolinas, created the portal.

ReservesNorth Inlet-Winyah Bay, South Carolina