Researchers and students from the University of Rhode Island (URI) recently took part in the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Hurricane Sandy recovery projects by mapping the underwater habitats of Fire Island National Seashore in New York.
“The initial step in effectively managing
submerged natural resources is to have an accurate and detailed understanding
of what resources you actually have,” URI Oceanography Professor John
King said. “Our project is providing that knowledge about the study sites to the
National Park Service for the first time.”
Using technology like acoustic sonars and
remote-controlled underwater vehicles, student’s from King’s laboratory in the
Graduate School of Oceanography were able to gather information about the
National Park, 75 percent of which is under water.
In addition to the research, URI students
in the Society, Ecology and Communication Laboratory collaborated on the
project to create a multimedia story entitled “The Big Reveal: Developing
Habitat Maps of the Seafloor of Key Coastal Natural Resources,” which includes copy,
interactive maps, photos and graphics on the project.
“It’s important people understand the value
of this research,” Jamie Remillard, rhetoric and composition doctoral student and co-creator of “The Big Reveal,” said. “‘The Big Reveal’ is informative, and it also connects people with
science that matters in an engaging, interactive way. Making that sort of
connection is key.”
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