Assessment of the impact of watershed restoration on marine sedimentation in the USVI
NOAA, NOS, Office for Coastal Management
"This is the first study to use a high resolution monitoring to directly compare turbidity and deposition data collected from below developed and minimally developed watersheds, and to separate resuspension induced turbidity and deposition from runoffinduced turbidity and deposition. Additionally this is the first study to show that timeintegrated sediment trap data are consistent with high-resolution turbidity and deposition data at recording the relative temporal changes in sedimentation between sampling period. The results of this study will help us to better understand the relative contribution of resuspension of benthic sediments vs. terrigenous runoff in affecting marine turbidity and sediment deposition in St. John. While current management policies have been focused on reducing sediment-laden runoff during storm events, the findings of this study may influence management decisions by revealing the role of sediment resuspension in reducing water quality. This study demonstrates the efficacy of time-integrated (monthly resolution) sediment trap monitoring approaches. The Coral Bay watershed restoration and monitoring program may serve as a case study on how to develop effective management and monitoring strategies that may be applied to other areas with similar ephemeral hydrologic behavior."
FY13; CRCP Project ID: 198; Project Title: Domestic Coral Reef Conservation Grant Programs; Principal Investigator: Jenny Waddell; Grant Number: NA13NOS4820021