CSA Ocean Sciences, Inc. is a proud flera sponsor!

 

CSA Ocean Sciences Inc. (CSA) is committed to examining environmental issues that affect water resources, estuaries, coastlines, and deepwater ocean habitats from our local coastal communities to international settings. CSA was founded in 1970 as an environmental consulting firm based in Jupiter, Florida. With headquarters now in Stuart, and offices in Sebastian and Tampa, CSA has substantial project experience in Florida and will apply expertise gained from extensive international studies and use of emerging technologies.

Our nearly five decades of experience in aquatic studies and surveys spanning our local springs, lakes, and rivers to the deep ocean includes sampling, monitoring, mapping, assessment, mitigation and reporting. Our team is composed of leaders in research and the environmental consulting industry with specialties in water quality monitoring, protected species assessments, habitat restoration, environmental permitting, and land and hydrographic surveying.

CSA’s operational approach is the integration of science, operations, safety, and environmental data management in a seamless end-to-end process. In addition to our science, operations, and analytical personnel, CSA owns, maintains, and operates an extensive array of water monitoring and sampling equipment, surveying equipment, dive equipment, small boats, trailers, trucks, unmanned surface vehicles (USVs), unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), underwater and aerial still cameras and video systems, and other tools designed for use in aquatic environmental monitoring and assessments.

A CSA scientific diver performing a visual census of benthic substrate using innovative technology (Shark Navigator System).

A CSA scientific diver performing a visual census of benthic substrate using innovative technology (Shark Navigator System).

CSA’s full-time staff members in Stuart include 14 senior scientists with more than 30 years of experience, 12 experienced biologists with more than 10 years of experience, a team of 5 geographic information systems (GIS) analysts and a database administrator, 10 operations specialists, a nationally recognized Science Resource library, a document production team, and support technicians (in addition to management and administrative personnel). Our scientific and operations personnel come from a wide range of backgrounds, including marine biology and ecology, marine chemistry, oceanography, acoustics, surveying, resource management, mitigation, restoration, and environmental permitting within academia, government, and industry.

Coastal Resource Surveys and Restoration

Primary objectives of restoration include accelerating habitat recovery and reducing liability for lost ecological services associated with natural resource damage. CSA’s coastal restoration specialists provide the services of professional, experienced staff to assess, enhance, rehabilitate, and monitor marine habitats damaged and/or at risk from proposed actions, accidents, and natural events. CSA also provides mitigation planning and artificial reef designs for coastal infrastructure projects.

 

Stony corals mapped by CSA's divers off of Florida’s east coast.

Stony corals mapped by CSA's divers off of Florida’s east coast.

Aerial view of the Julia Tuttle Causeway Mitigation Site where CSA successfully transplanted over 29,000 seagrass planting units in checkerboard fashion as part of the Port of Miami Harbor expansion project.

Aerial view of the Julia Tuttle Causeway Mitigation Site where CSA successfully transplanted over 29,000 seagrass planting units in checkerboard fashion as part of the Port of Miami Harbor expansion project.

CSA staff are trained and equipped to conduct surveys of hardbottom habitats, coral reefs, oyster reefs, seagrass beds, and unvegetated soft bottom habitats in connection with environmental permitting, marine construction, litigation, dredging projects, habitat reclamation, and vessel grounding events. Such projects may require habitat creation, restoration, injured biotic community repair, baseline data collection, and monitoring, all tasks in which CSA is highly proficient. CSA has developed and field-tested new methods for reattaching and transplanting hard and soft corals and sponges in addition to having designed and installed innovative reef structural habitat enhancements as a means of accelerating biological recovery. 

CSA staff have successfully relocated or reattached more than 62,000 stony corals and 13,000 soft corals as mitigation for marine construction, pipeline placement, and harbor dredging projects and reef restoration sites. We are experienced in conducting seagrass restoration through sediment stabilization and transplantation and utilizing structural augmentation (artificial reef) as a component of habitat reclamation.

One of CSA's survey vessels working off of Tampa Bay.

One of CSA's survey vessels working off of Tampa Bay.

CSA’s Coastal Restoration specialists have worked throughout the world, providing expertise and professional services to assess, rehabilitate, enhance, and monitor marine habitats damaged and/or at risk from proposed actions, accidents, and being altered by natural events. CSA has completed 155 domestic and 59 international marine habitat impact or restoration projects (15 oyster reef, 60 seagrass, 117 coral reef, 10 artificial reef, and 11 water quality projects). The table below summarizes the habitat type and geographical area for CSA’s project experience.

 Recent Florida Efforts

Some recent efforts in Florida have included:

  • Port of Miami Seagrass Mitigation Transplant efforts

  • Hard bottom mapping in Tampa Bay for the Tampa Bay Estuary Program, Hillsborough County, and Pinellas County (CSA has now completed over 100 square miles with Tampa Bay alone using side scan sonar data ground-truthed with underwater video)

  • Seagrass/sensitive submerged resource mapping for FDOT- District 7 for the new Howard Frankland Bridge

  • Ongoing hard bottom/submerged resource monitoring during beach nourishment for Martin County, St. Lucie County, and Brevard County

  • Seagrass mitigation (over 29,000 planting units transplanted) as part of the Port of Miami Harbor expansion effort

  • Beach Nourishment Corridor Clearance Surveys off Gasparilla Island, Lee County, Florida

  • Wave break construction for Bonner Bridge as an innovative seagrass recruitment approach for the NCDOT in northern Pamlico Sound, North Carolina.

Wave break construction being used as an innovative seagrass recruitment/mitigation approach for NCDOT’s Bonner Bridge project. CSA continues to monitor the ongoing colonization of seagrass behind the structure as well as fauna colonizing the structure itself.

Wave break construction being used as an innovative seagrass recruitment/mitigation approach for NCDOT’s Bonner Bridge project. CSA continues to monitor the ongoing colonization of seagrass behind the structure as well as fauna colonizing the structure itself.

CSA scientist conducting a hardbottom survey in St. Lucie County, Florida.

CSA scientist conducting a hardbottom survey in St. Lucie County, Florida.