Marine Habitat Assessment and Mapping

Habitat assessments look at the state of the environment to understand what biological elements are using the habitat and how they may be potentially affected by a project. Since habitat availability is a limiting factor for marine species, this is a vital component to risk managing the conflicts and constraints of a project. Our experienced multi-disciplinary team of WCB certified commercial SCUBA divers, biologists and technicians specializing in marine biology we have the experience to identify habitat types, extents and sensitivity in a dynamic marine environment.

Marine subtidal, intertidal and estuarine ecosystems

  • Baseline and impact assessments
  • Critical habitat and sensitive species identification
  • Compensation requirements and / or compliance with operational guidelines
  • Habitat and impact classification
  • Example projects include log dumps, dock installations, boat ramps, industrial facilities

Organism Sampling And Identification

  • Surveys for important species such as abalone and eelgrass
  • Identify forage fish (sand lance, smelt and herring ) spawning areas
  • ID the biodiversity of macroalgae, invertebrates and vertebrates
  • Eelgrass transplanting
  • Kelp propagation

Accurate Habitat Imaging And Mapping

  • Upland, foreshore surveying and terrain modeling
  • Intertidal and subtidal Bathymetric profiling
  • GIS mapping using sonar, acoustic positioning, and dGPS
  • Underwater and aerial imaging and videography

Tools In Our Kit Include:

  • Snorkel and SCUBA surveys, drop cameras
  • Remotely operated vehicle (ROV)
  • Remotely Piloted Aerial Systems (RPAS or ‘drones’)
  • Satellite imaging for historical context
  • SONAR surveys

We assist our clients in defining a project’s scope of impacts, identifying which habitat features are most likely to be impacted now or in to the future. We develop site-specific plans to mitigate or offset potential impacts followed by post-construction effectiveness monitoring. Should your project require compensation to offset unavoidable impacts, we offer years of experience in marine habitat restoration and habitat banking. We will manage each project efficiently and effectively within the constraints of time and budget.

Time-lapse of an estuarine vegetation inventory

Eelgrass survey from a drone flight over a marine lake