The Baseline Characterization of Rocky Intertidal Ecosystems project is a collaboration between researchers at UC Santa Barbara and UC Santa Cruz, California State University Fullerton, Cal Poly Pomona, and the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary.

The goals of this project were to:

  • Produce a quantitative baseline characterization of the structure of rocky intertidal ecosystems in all of the South Coast MPAs that have accessible rocky intertidal; and
  • Provide a quantitative comparison between the rocky intertidal ecosystems in these MPAs and associated reference areas in the South coast region using a combination of biodiversity surveys and targeted species sampling.

Researchers analytically explored the baseline characterizations for potential indicators of the state of the rocky intertidal ecosystems using newly collected data along with historical and contextual data from the region; evaluated the suitability of proposed draft metrics and other metrics for long term monitoring; and assessed initial changes in size and abundance of targeted species across newly created MPAs, existing MPAs and reference areas.


Researchers described their findings from this project in a technical report, released in March 2015. Click below to read the report on California Sea Grant's website. 

Final Report: Baseline Characterization of Rocky Intertidal Ecosystems



Data from this project are listed below. You can also access the data through the OceanSpaces data archive, and learn more about each data package.