Deep-Sea Coral Data Portal

Posted on: 3/15/2023 - Updated on: 3/15/2023

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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program (Program) compiles, curates, and makes publically accessible a National Database of biogeographic data and information on deep-sea corals and sponges – the most important habitat-forming organisms in the deep sea.

The database is accessible through the Program’s Data Portal and provides geographically-specific information on the diversity, distribution and abundance of corals and sponges. The database focuses on records of occurrences within the United States Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), but the Program includes records outside of the U.S. EEZ where available and is actively encouraging partnerships worldwide to enhance the geographic scope of the data served. The database fulfills NOAA’s requirements under the reauthorized Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA, 2007) to identify and map locations of deep-sea corals, and to submit this information for use by regional fishery management councils (FMCs).

The database is the most comprehensive, quality-assured, national-scale, data portal for deep-sea corals and sponges available. Access the data portal with our national deep-sea coral and sponge database, related map layers, StoryMaps, data dashboards, and more. It includes:

  • 108 publically available fields that relate to the location, taxonomy, environmental conditions, and the provenance of the observations
  • 740,000 individual records in the database composed of 238 individual data sets from 73 different data providers
  • 488,876 coral records
  • 254,877 sponge records

Managing Organizations

NOAA is an agency that enriches life through science. Our reach goes from the surface of the sun to the depths of the ocean floor as we work to keep citizens informed of the changing environment around them. From daily weather forecasts, severe storm warnings and climate monitoring to fisheries management, coastal restoration and supporting marine commerce, NOAA’s products and services support economic vitality and affect more than one-third of America’s gross domestic product.

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