Developing a Gulf-wide Comprehensive Plan for In-water Sea Turtle Data Collection
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; US Department of the Interior
DWH Project Funding
Known Leveraged Funding
Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees (NRDA)
Natural Resource Damage Assessment NRDA
This project will develop a strategic plan for coordinated in-water data collection efforts across the Gulf of Mexico and establish standardized monitoring protocols. This effort will provide important context for project and resource-level monitoring, and will allow comparisons across multiple sea turtle restoration projects. This project outcomes will be used to guide the formation of a coordinated sea turtle in-water monitoring network to fill critical data gaps. This project supports all the Trustees’ restoration goals for sea turtles. In particular, the project supports the Trustees’ goal to implement an integrated portfolio of restoration approaches to address all injured life stages (hatchling, juvenile, and adult) and species of sea turtles. The project is anticipated to take two years and involves the formation of a steering committee, selection of a working group, facilitation of stakeholder meetings, and the development of a comprehensive in-water survey plan. The comprehensive in-water survey plan will include standardized methods for data collection and a survey design to improve the understanding of population trends and important population parameters. The project will also identify critical information gaps which will help inform restoration planning. The final strategic plan will provide guidance for Gulf of Mexico sea turtle abundance and demographic data collection and compilation to enhance restoration planning and monitoring. The final plan will also describe potential partners, field data collection methods, database structure, and data management.