Project Page

Trends and drivers of faunal abundance in the offshore Gulf of Mexico: narrowing the largest data gap in the Gulf’s large marine ecosystem

Implementing Organization

Nova Southeastern University (NSU)


DWH Project Funding


Known Leveraged Funding


Funding Organization

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Funding Program

The RESTORE Act Funds Bucket 4: NOAA RESTORE Act Science Program


Project Category


Project Actions

Environmental Research

Targeted Resources

Fish/Fish Habitats

Project Description

The deep-pelagic habitat in the Gulf of Mexico is one of four ‘hyperdiverse’ deep-pelagic ecoregions on Earth. It is also the largest and least known habitat in the Gulf of Mexico. This project uses midwater nets and acoustics (i.e. sound waves) to sample the deep-pelagic region. By analyzing the data collected, the project team is able to quantify trends across the Gulf of Mexico and over time. The project is also developing baselines for deep-pelagic fauna in the Gulf of Mexico. In addition, the project team analyzes temperature, salinity, and ocean circulation data to locate the Gulf of Mexico loop current and the Mississippi River plume and identify key drivers of deep-pelagic community structure and abundance.


Tracey Sutton
Project Website
Project Partners

NOAA Office of Response and Restoration, NOAA Southeast Fisheries Science Center, NOAA National Systematics Laboratory

Affiliated Institutions


+ View Raw Data