Status and trends analysis of oyster reef habitat in Galveston Bay
Powell, Erin N.
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The purpose of this GBNEP study is to describe the status and trends of oyster populations in Galveston Bay. To do so required the development of a new mapping method designed to discriminate oyster reefs from other bottom types rapidly, accurately, and inexpensively. The method uses an acoustic profiler to differentiate substrate type, a fathometer to assess bottom relief and a global positioning system to accurately establish position. The method has the following desirable traits: can be performed from a small research vessel, usable in most weather conditions, requires only a two-person crew, rapidly discriminates bottom type while underway, usable in shallow (<1m) or deep (>10m) water, and provides accurate and precise navigation.