The Estuarine Living Marine Resources Program (ELMR) program is a developing project to produce a comprehensive data base on the relative abundance, distribution and life history characteristics of selected fish and invertebrate species in estuaries throughout the contiguous United States. The program utilizes a consistent sampling strategy that enables comparisons to be made among species, specific life stages and times of year within, and to a lesser degree, among estuarine systems. The relative importance of individual estuaries to specific species also may be determined. When completed, the data base will contain information for approximately 153 fish and invertebrate species from about 122 U.S. estuaries.
The spatial and temporal distribution, relative abundance, and life history characteristics are examined for a variety of fish and invertebrate species for selected estuaries. Species are selected according to a set of criteria, which consider their commercial, recreational, and ecological value, as well as their utility as an indicator of environmental stress. For each species and estuary, data are compiled on the distribution of five life stages (adult, spawning, egg, larva, and juvenile) by month and by salinity zone. In addition, the relative abundance of each species, by life stage, month and salinity zone, is estimated using a five-point scale, ranging from 'not present' to 'highly abundant'. Estuarine life history information, which summarizes how and when each species uses estuaries and what specific habitats they use, also is compiled.
The ELMR program focuses on marine estuarine systems along the contiguous United States. The program is organized into four regional components: The Northeast (57 species in 34 estuaries), Southeast (40 species in 20 estuaries), Gulf of Mexico (36 species in 13 estuaries), and West (47 species in 32 estuaries) Coasts. Estuaries are identified by the National Estuarine Inventory. Spatial distributional data are presented for three salinity zones; tidal fresh (0.0 to 0.5 parts per thousand (ppt)), mixing (0.5 to 25.0 ppt), and seawater (>25.0 ppt), that are delineated for each estuary in the NEI.
nccos at cop.noaa.gov
Center for Coastal Monitoring and Assessment
National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science
National Ocean Service
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce
1305 East-West Highway City:
Province or State:
301-713-3028, ext. 160
Mark.Monaco at noaa.gov
Office of Ocean Resources Conservation and Assessment
Strategic Environmental Assessment Division
Biogeographic Assessments Branch
NOAA/National Ocean Service
o ELMR Report 3: The Distribution and Abundance of Fishes and Invertebrates in Texas Estuaries, (1989).
o ELMR Report 4: The Distribution and Abundance of Fishes and Invertebrates in West Coast Estuaries, Volume I: Data Summaries, (1990).
o ELMR Report 5: A Proposed Estuarine Classification: Analysis of Species Salinity Ranges, (1990).
o ELMR Report 6: The Distribution and Abundance of Fishes and Invertebrates in Eastern Gulf of Mexico Estuaries, (1990).
o ELMR Report 7: The Distribution and Abundance of Fishes and Invertebrates in Central Gulf of Mexico Estuaries, (1991).
o ELMR Report 8: Fishes and Invertebrates in West Coast Estuaries, Volume II: Life History Summaries, (1991).
o ELMR Report 9: The Distribution and Abundance of Fishes and Invertebrates in Southeast Estuaries, (1991).