Intertidal Oyster Reefs: Assessing a Habitat Regime Shift and Exploring the Use of Virtual Reality in Science Outreach

Friday, February 9, 2024 10 a.m. to noon

Oyster reefs are among the most threatened coastal habitats globally, making both research and community awareness vital to conservation efforts. Research on climate change and other anthropogenic impacts helps to determine sources of oyster reef degradation. Tropicalization, the poleward movement of tropical species due to warming temperatures, has recently been found to negatively impact intertidal oyster reefs. Due to tropicalization, mangroves have expanded poleward where they have been found to take over intertidal oyster reef habitat. The first goal of my proposal aims to determine variables that play a role in the intertidal oyster reef to mangrove island regime shift. Oyster reef restoration helps to reestablish degraded habitat and maintain reef ecosystem services within estuarine systems. Community engagement and support are essential to the success of restoration projects, where effective methods of science communication help boost community involvement. The second goal of my proposal is to determine if virtual reality can be used as an effective method of science communication to provide people with first-hand perspectives of oyster reef habitats and teach community members about the importance of restoration.

Zoom Meeting ID: 924 0917 1423 Passcode: mangrove

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Bio: 415: Bio: 415


Denise Montenegro


Biology Department Calendar




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