Implementing Great Lakes Coastal Wetland Monitoring

  • Funded By: EPA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative
  • ECI Investigators: Gary Lamberti
  • Partners: Bird Studies Canada, Central Michigan University, Environment Canada, Grand Valley State, Lake Superior State, Michigan DEQ, Oregon State, SUNY-Brockport, University of Minnesota-Duluth, University of Windsor, University of Wisconsin

Implementing Great Lakes Coastal Wetland Monitoring

This project establishes and implements a basin-wide coastal wetland monitoring program.  Coastal wetlands are critical components of the Great Lakes ecosystem, yet they have been severely degraded and dramatically reduced in extent.  To aid restoration and conservation of these unique habitats, the researchers and collaborators are establishing and implementing the first ever basin-wide coastal wetland monitoring program.  Researchers assess fish, invertebrate, bird, amphibian, and plant communities along with chemical and physical variables.

During this 5-year project, researchers assessed the majority of all coastal wetland complexes greater than four hectare in size. Led by Central Michigan University, these efforts initiated a robust and sustainable long-term monitoring system that provides data to influence decision making to prevent further wetland degradation and loss. Federal agencies are able to strategically target the biggest threats to the Great Lakes ecosystem and to accelerate progress toward lasting goals.

In 2015, this project recieved $10 million expansion from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to continue monitoring coastal wetlands around the Great Lakes basin over the next five years, while simultaneously evaluating ongoing and future wetlands restoration efforts.

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