Management Use of Data

Beach Watch data has proven invaluable to Natural Resource Management Agencies and researchers. Examples include:

  • Data provided for historic bird and mammal mortality rates that can be compared to the species beached during oil spills. The state and federal trustee agencies of the Cape Mohican, Command, Jacob Luckenbach, and Cosco Busan requested Beach Watch data as part of their Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) studies. This data helped secure a settlement of $44.4 in damages and penalties from the 2007 Cosco Busan spill, at the time, the largest compensation for an oil spill.
  • Beach Watch live shorebird data has been examined by the National Park Service (NPS) to develop a dog management plan for the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA). Data from eight beach segments helped describe shorebird species richness, seasonal variation, and relative abundance- which aided the park in designating wildlife protection areas.
  • Consistently gathered dead vertebrate data provide baseline species mortality rates and and show trends in timing and severity. Beach Watch works closely with our partners to investigate whether a mortality event simply reflects higher abundance offshore, or has an environmental or epidemiological component.
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Photo Credit: Beach Watch/GFNMS/NOAA

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Photo Credit: Jason Thompson