Coastal Ocean Research at SABS

SABS oceanographic focus is on the coastal marine environment, an area that is heavily utilized for a variety of industrial and recreational activities.  The aim is to identify links between the physical components (such as water temperature, salinity, and currents) and the marine ecosystem using a combination of field work, data analysis and computer modeling.

Work has focused on interactions between aquaculture and oceanographic conditions.  We are assisting the aquaculture industry to develop management areas to reduce environmental impacts such as changes to the ocean bottom under sea cages, improved disease management and more.  SABS oceanographers are also providing information on offshore aquaculture development.

Research in ecology and the classification of marine species and their habitats within the Bay of Fundy and Gulf of Maine is underway to report on its current state and to develop indices of historical change.  These support DFOs conservation mandates within the Oceans Act and the new ecosystem-based fisheries management approaches to better  understand the important connections between habitat and species interactions.

Habitat mapping to support Marine Protected Areas (MPA) planning and other departmental activities is also conducted. Staff recently developed a coastline and sub-tidal habitat classification to direct future coastal MPA planning in the area.

In collaboration with the Huntsman Marine Science Centre, universities, and U.S. scientists, research includes: interactions between marine activities and habitat; benthic classification and mapping; factors and processes related to biodiversity; improved methods of species and habitat identification; detection of biological and ecological significant areas; and science for management of the Musquash Marine Protected Area.