Coastal Trawl Survey (CTS) and Data Management
Southeast Monitoring and Assessment Program – South Atlantic (SEAMAP-SA)
MRRI staff, funded by the Southeast Area Monitoring and Assessment Program - South Atlantic (SEAMAP-SA) of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) since 1986, have been conducting a shallow water trawl survey in the coastal zone from Cape Hatteras, NC to Cape Canaveral, FL.
The goal of this project is to monitor the status and trends of coastal species in the South Atlantic Bight, including fish, decapod crustaceans (shrimp and crabs), horseshoe crabs, mantis shrimp, squid, and sea turtles, in order to amass a long-term data base for research and fisheries management use. Twenty-seven finfish and decapod crustacean species of key commercial or recreational interest, all sharks, all marine turtles, and horseshoe crabs are considered to be priority species. The project collects abundance and biomass data for all species, and lengths or widths for priority species. Priority species may have additional information such as individual weights, sex, sexual development, and/or tagging data recorded for them as well.
As the only coastal trawl survey that encompasses the entire Southeast region, this survey contributes to general knowledge of coastal species and aids numerous investigators and students by supplying data and specimens.
- This survey samples shallow coastal waters from Cape Hatteras, North Carolina to Cape Canaveral, Florida at depths from 15 to 30 feet. (Map of Coastal Trawl Survey sampling strata)
- Samples are collected aboard the R/V Lady Lisa by towing a pair of 75 ft. mongoose-type Falcon Trawls for 20 minutes
- SEAMAP-SA Coastal Trawl Survey cruises are conducted each year in Spring (mid-April to the end of May), Summer (mid-July to mid-August), and Fall (the first of October to mid-November)