NOAA’s Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program is the only federal program dedicated to understanding deep-sea coral and sponge ecosystems. The Program has just launched a revamped website to help share information and data about exciting deep-sea coral expeditions and discoveries. The new website features a sleeker layout and more user-friendly navigation options.
One notable update highlights major research initiatives. As a critical part of its work, the Program operates 3- to 4-year research initiatives that rotate through each region. These initiatives greatly improve our knowledge of deep-sea corals and the ecosystems they support. Website users can read brief summaries of the research conducted under the initiatives to better understand the Program’s work and impact and explore detailed initiative descriptions for each region.
The website now features a more streamlined and intuitive publication database with expanded search capabilities. Users can find peer-reviewed journal articles, expedition reports, NOAA technical memoranda, and other publications resulting from Program-supported work. The website also highlights deep-sea coral and sponge conservation articles, staff and student alumni profiles, and an education and outreach section.
The Program will continue to add more resources and functionality to the website. In the coming months, our partners at the NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information will relaunch an upgraded version of the Program’s mapping and data access portal. The portal hosts a national database of deep-sea coral and sponge observations. It provides map-based query, visualization, and downloads of the database. It will also serve as a hub for data dashboards, StoryMaps, map layers, data downloads, model outputs, and more.
The Program improves our understanding of deep-sea coral communities, supports management decisions, and leverages joint priorities with different partners through innovative, science based research. They work with partners both within NOAA and externally to provide data and information needed by managers to conserve and manage valuable deep-sea coral and sponge habitats.