Keyswide coral reef expedition

Steven Miller smiller at
Sun Aug 20 19:54:16 EDT 1995

The first of three mission legs is underway to document coral reef community  
structure throughout the Florida Keys, from south of Miami to the Dry  
Tortugas.  Fourteen scientists have assembled on the M/V Seaward Explorer for  
10 days to specifically work the deep intermediate reefs, in 50 -70 feet of  
water.  One of our operating premises is that to understand system variability  
it is important to survey many reefs, rather than looking at a few in great  
detail.  We plan to visit up to 30 sites, working 10 days this month, 7 days  
in September, and 10 days in October.  Principal investigators on the  
first leg include Steven Miller (NURC/UNCW), John and Nancy Ogden (FIO), Rich  
Aronson (Dauphin Island Sea Lab), Dennis Hanisak HBOI), Jim Bohnsack (NMFS),  
Tracy Baynes (NMFS), and Gene Shinn (USGS). 

Video transects, photography, fish censuses, algal collections, and  
nutrient-related work comprise a large part of the effort.  A substantial  
amount of subjective discussion is held each day as well, to provide overview  
and an immediate product.  The project is a cooperative effort among several  
agencies, with administration and operational support provided by the National  
Undersea Research Center at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.   
The Florida Institute of Oceanography is providing ship time and funding, as  
are the National Park Service and the National Marine Sanctuary Program.   
Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution is also contributing substantially to  
the program by providing ship time for leg two in September. 

Updates will be provided at the end of the cruise, later this month.  Please  
send inquiries to Steven Miller at the above e-mail adress, or to  
millers at 

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