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Research Technical Report

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MBNMSResearchSummaryDec2003.pdf (3.7 MB)

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Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary 2003 Field Research Review

MBNMS (December 2003)

A Report to the Sanctuary Advisory Council, 49pp.


The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (Sanctuary) Research Team increases understanding of the Sanctuary ecosystem, and interprets this information to a broad audience. The team enhances research on the Sanctuary by making scientists aware of critical management issues, reviewing existing literature and data, providing program funds to researchers, obtaining non-program grants and other funds to support regional research efforts, and by directly doing research. This research information is made available to decision makers, educators, scientists, and the public through the Sanctuary Resource Protection and Education Teams, as well as directly through web sites, reports, public presentations, and responding to individual requests for information. The Sanctuary Advisory Council working group on research (the Research Activity Panel) is an invaluable collaborator with the Sanctuary Research Team, providing guidance, expertise, and research facilities. In fact, the Sanctuary region is increasingly being recognized as a leading world center for marine science.

This report is a review of the Sanctuary Research Team activities in 2003, with a focus on our major research cruises. In the first section of this report, we review four projects: (1) geological mapping using the NOAA R/V McARTHUR II (224 ft); (2) a shallow subtidal and rocky shore survey of the Big Sur coast, using the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary R/V Shearwater (62 ft); (3) fish, invertebrate, and habitat characterization, as well a shipwreck survey using the two-person Delta submersible ; and (4) an environmental impact survey of the Pioneer Seamount cable using MBARI's R/V Pt. Lobos (110 ft) and Western Flyer (117 ft). These projects address a range of management issues including delineation of sites sensitive to road maintenance dumping, assessing fish populations, determining oil spill threats, basic characterization of habitats, and providing information for developing a national policy on undersea cables in Sanctuaries. The second section addresses how the research team is sharing and integrating regional research. This year, the Sanctuary Integrated Monitoring Network (SIMoN) web portal was released, providing a central, starting place for finding habitat information and monitoring trends in coastal central California. Finally, the report provides abstracts of the many presentations and publications that the Research Team has authored in 2003. Many partners were necessary for successfully completing all of these research efforts, and they are outlined in the report. For a full description of the Sanctuary Research Program, including current and historical activities, see the SIMoN web portal ( and the Research and Monitoring section of the Sanctuary web site (

Reviewed: April 11, 2024
Web Site Owner: National Ocean Service

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