Gulf of Mexico Data Atlas Gulf of Mexico Data Atlas

Habitats

Critical habitats

Critical habitats for Acropora, Gulf Sturgeon, and Smalltooth Sawfish in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Critical Habitats Atlas Dataset

Essential Fish Habitats - Council Managed Species

Essential Fish Habitats (EFH) are defined in the Magnuson-Stevens Act as "...those waters and substrate necessary to fish for spawning, breeding, feeding, or growth to maturity." The rules promulgated by the NMFS in 1997 and 2002 further clarify EFH with the following definitions: waters - aquatic areas and their associated physical, chemical, and biological properties that are used by fish and may include aquatic areas historically used by fish where appropriate; substrate - sediment, hard bottom, structures underlying the waters, and associated biological communities; necessary - the habitat required to support a sustainable fishery and the managed species' contribution to a healthy ecosystem; and spawning, breeding, feeding, or growth to maturity - stages representing a species' full life cycle. The area defined includes Gulf of Mexico waters and substrates extending from the US/Mexico border to the boundary between the areas covered by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council and the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council from estuarine waters out to depths of 100 fathoms.

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Council Managed Species Atlas Dataset

Highly Migratory Species - Atlantic Bluefin Tuna

Spatial representation of Amendment 1 of the Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP). This amendment constitutes the results of the comprehensive review and update of Essential Fish Habitats (EFH) for all HMS that began with the Consolidated HMS FMP. New information, including information on the biology, distribution, habitat requirements, life history characteristics, migratory patterns, spawning, pupping, and nursery areas of Atlantic HMS were taken into consideration when updating EFH in this amendment.

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Highly Migratory Species - Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Atlas Dataset

Atlantic Bluefin Tuna - Suitable Feeding and Spawning Habitats

A habitat model was developed to identify potential feeding and spawning habitats of Atlantic Bluefin Tuna in the Gulf of Mexico. The model used catch and survey data on tuna presence, and environmental data from satellite observations and ocean models. The habitat mapping can be used by scientists and resource managers to better understand tuna distribution.

Additional image formats and visualization tools:

Atlantic Bluefin Tuna - Suitable Feeding and Spawning Habitats Atlas Dataset