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Our current aquatic resource management methodology is in dire need of modernization. While many animal rights and animal welfare organizations have seen great success in recent decades regarding certain species of marine life, such as marine mammals used in entertainment, there is still much work to be done regarding animal welfare in the aquacult...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

In the past decade, the boom of large scale spatial products enrich conservation experts with more resources and data to make smarter and more comprehensive land conservation decisions on large study areas. Web application, as one of the most accessible methods to share data across a large audience, has been increasingly used to provide intuitive v...

Oral Presentation

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) does work that affects more than one-third of America’s gross domestic product, and provides information that helps people make decisions related to topics ranging from weather to coastal restoration to fisheries. We develop tools and information to advance coastal community resiliency, a...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

The Sea-Level Rise in the Classroom curriculum enhances scientific, environmental, and civics literacy of high school students through four modules on understanding and addressing sea-level rise impacts. Students that understand the risks and are prepared to undertake potential solutions generate an empowered coastal citizenry able to support resil...

Oral Presentation

Aquatic Care Team (ACT): Empowering Students to Take Action The Navarre Beach Marine Science Station (NBMSS), a Santa Rosa County District School, is dedicated to educating students in the classroom, through research, and community outreach. The NBMSS has received a grant from NOAA to monitor the water quality of the Santa Rosa Sound. NBMSS sits al...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

Longevity of coastal salt marshes is inevitably controlled by the imbalance of processes driving vertical elevation change (e.g., organic and inorganic sediment accumulation) and spatial extent (e.g., shoreline erosion, upland migration). Short-term (days to years) observations and measurements of vertical and lateral change may not capture natural...

Oral Presentation

In spring and summer of 2019, the two openings of the Bonnet Carré Spillway represented an unprecedented change from natural modes of variability to an engineered diversion in a coastal system. The abundance of river discharge diverted by this event has an unknown potential for impacts on water quality and coastal dynamics in this region. Using a ...

Oral Presentation

Research on the fate and uptake of plastic pollutants in tidal marsh ecosystems is sparse. In an attempt to quantify microplastic prevalence in tidal marsh ecosystems along the coast of Mississippi, we sampled marsh sediments and resident tidal marsh bird stomach contents within three marsh complexes along the Mississippi Coast. To investigate the ...

Oral Presentation

Wave energy is a major driver for coastal processes, such as erosion, sediment transport, and hydrodynamics. For this reason, it is important for wave energy to be considered in the process of site selection, design, and implementation of conservation and restoration projects. In areas influenced by boat wakes, no-wake, or idle speed only, zones ha...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

In 2017, 25% of all US counties received at least one major presidential disaster declaration. In 2020, this trend continues with devastating wildfires, stronger hurricanes, extreme flooding, intense tornadoes, and other natural disasters. Since 2004, Santa Rosa County (SRC) has been included in 13 declared disasters. In addition, increased populat...

Oral Presentation

Across the Mississippi Gulf Coast, hardened infrastructure (e.g., bulkheads, seawalls) is the dominant method of shoreline stabilization among private properties. In recent years, living shorelines have become an increasingly popular alternative; however, formal economic analyses of small-scale green and grey shoreline protection infrastructure in ...

Oral Presentation

Waves have profound effects on coastal geomorphology, but the understanding of wave climate effects on coastal ecology is limited due, in part, to the high cost of commercial wave gauges. High-cost gauges also limit the scope of coastal wave models and the ability of coastal land managers to design effective restoration, conservation and enhancemen...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

Commercial fishing is a culturally and economically important industry in coastal regions across the United States. During the past 30 years, the average age of commercial fishermen has increased substantially. This trend is commonly referred to as the “greying of the fleet” and is attributed to a substantial decrease in the number of new comme...

Oral Presentation

For coastal communities, climate change is making flood and stormwater management increasingly complex, as heavy rainfall runoff, inland flooding, storm surge, and sea level rise is proving to be a game changer. NOAA’s Water Initiative is working to meet these challenges by transforming how NOAA develops and delivers water information services to...

Oral Presentation

Human impacts on coastal marshes are considerable, with 1-2% of coastal marshes lost per year leading to subsequent losses in ecosystem services like nutrient filtering and carbon sequestration. Currently, marsh construction is being used to mitigate losses of marsh cover and services resulting from human impacts in coastal areas. Though marsh stru...

Oral Presentation

Increasingly, coastal wetland restoration is utilized to offset wetland loss and degradation and to recover ecosystem services, making it important to evaluate the relative effectiveness and times to functional equivalence of different restoration strategies. Two critically important services provided by coastal wetlands are carbon storage and nitr...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

Marsh terracing is a coastal restoration technique that can dissipate wind driven waves, reduce fetch, and potentially reduce erosion from adjacent marsh platform in the northern Gulf of Mexico. This technique consists of constructing segmented berms of bare soil from sediment excavated within shallow coastal ponds. Over 980 linear km of marsh terr...

Oral Presentation

Gulf of Mexico coastal wetlands support millions of migratory birds annually. However, between 2004 and 2009, Gulf states have experienced 71% of the total decline of coastal wetlands within the conterminous United States with Louisiana accounting for most of this loss. Marsh terracing is one method used to combat coastal wetland loss. This restora...

Oral Presentation

Many mollusks alter their shell morphology in response to predator exudates or injured conspecifics to lower their predation risk. However, studies have yet to examine whether this predator-avoidance response can be applied under aquaculture scenarios to improve fisheries. We tested whether exposure to predator cues under hatchery conditions can in...

Oral Presentation

Mortality investigation for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) stranded on the Alabama coast increased from 2010 to 2014 during the northern Gulf of Mexico unusual mortality event (UME) associated with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (DWHOS). Cause of death (COD) patterns since that event have not been published and baseline prevalence of Bru...

Oral Presentation

There is an overwhelming consensus among conservation experts that an efficient, data-driven, science-based geospatial conservation prioritization tool can help guide or optimize the dollars spent on land conservation. In this work, we developed and implemented a conservation prioritization framework that integrates open-source data and an optimiza...

Oral Presentation

Few studies have examined the fate of dredge spoil placed along river corridors from a geomorphic and retrospective perspective. Such studies can provide guidance to rivers currently being dredged. The Apalachicola River in Florida was dredged from the 1950s for several decades, with disposal on the floodplain, sand bars and open water during the n...

Oral Presentation

In the United States and around the world, the security of critical water resources is at risk. Too much water, too little water, or water of poor quality endangers life, property, economies, and ecosystems. These threats to water security arise from several factors, including increased water demand from population growth and weather and water-rela...

Oral Presentation

Africatown, located in Mobile, Alabama, represents a community settled by captives brought to the United States from Africa by slave ship Clotilda, known as the last slave ship to arrive in the USA. Africatown is unique in that it represents a group of Africans who were forcefully removed from their homeland, sold into slavery, and then formed thei...

Oral Presentation

Blue crabs, Callinectes sapidus, support valuable commercial fisheries throughout much of their range, including the Gulf of Mexico. Over the last five years (2015–2019), Gulf-wide annual commercial landings averaged 51 million pounds for an annual dockside value of over $70 million. Despite active management on the state level, many states have ...

Oral Presentation

The state of Alabama has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on shoreline restoration projects, with one goal being to enhance shoreline habitats for fisheries species. For example, $3 million was spent in 2010 to rebuild Little Bay Peninsula and shelter Little Bay in Mississippi Sound. Despite this significant financial investment, post-restorat...

Oral Presentation

Advances in geospatial technologies have stream-lined data collection, analysis, and visualization for environmental and coastal resource management. These advances have helped to enhance geospatial education and outreach application development for issues related to coastal flooding and sea level rise. Augmented Reality (AR) technologies are allow...

3-Minute Lightning Talk

Coastal wetlands provide numerous ecosystem services including improved water quality, valuable habitat for fish and wildlife, and shoreline protection. However, their resilience is largely a function of various environmental stressors which can reduce elevation and result in loss of coastal habitat. In systems where natural sedimentation processes...

Oral Presentation

The Mobile Bay National Estuary Program (MBNEP) Management Conference consists of five constituent committees: Community Action Committee, Community Resources Committee, Government Networks Committee, Business Resources Committee, and Project Implementation Committee. A Science Advisory Committee (SAC) of experts from multiple scientific discipline...

Oral Presentation

Dissolved oxygen (DO) is often used as a water quality indicator and proxy for ecosystem health. Organic matter is remineralized in sediments by microbial and macrofaunal communities that consume DO in the process. DO consumption rate depends on the DO concentration of the overlying water but can also be enhanced by mixing and irrigating activities...

Oral Presentation