Researchers from the Sanctuaries MBON and the Florida Coastal Everglades Long Term Ecological Research (FCE LTER) programs teamed up to develop a white paper to lay out the requirements for a large, interdisciplinary airborne remote sensing campaign to study the biodiversity and ecology of the South Florida Peninsula spanning land-ocean habitats from treetops to the benthos.
The MBON and the FCE LTER had an in person meeting to address these linkages January 9-11, 2018, in Miami. The FCE LTER program is based at Florida International University and includes over 150 senior scientists, students, and staff from over 30 institutional partners, including other universities, local, state, and federal agencies, and non-governmental organizations.
The MBON-FCE LTR effort seeks to understand the ecological and biogeochemical linkages between the Everglades and the Florida Keys. The study design seeks quantify biodiversity, habitat connectivity, and biogeochemical processes using field measurements, satellite observations and NASA ER-2 aircraft campaigns that include LiDAR altimetry, and hyperspectral visible and thermal instruments. The white paper would inform the writing of a white paper for the NASA Biodiversity Program.
The MBON cruises done jointly with NOAA AOML collect samples in Florida Bay up to the Shark River. There are ongoing discussions on merging these MBON datasets and the LTER data collected in Florida Bay and in the Everglades, including seagrass cover and phytoplankton biodiversity.