Program Info

Mussel Watch is the longest running continuous chemical contaminant monitoring program in U.S. coastal and Great Lakes waters and was created in response to concerns over environmental quality of the Nation's coastal and estuarine ecosystems. The Program analyzes chemical and biological contaminant trends in sediment and bivalve tissue collected at over 300 coastal sites from 1986 to present. Parameters monitored include over 150 organic and inorganic contaminants, in sediment and bivalve tissue and bivalve histology; and Clostridium perfringens (pathogen) concentrations. Some of the chemicals regularly quantified include: PAHs, PCBs, chlorinated pesticides including DDT and its metabolites, TBT and its metabolites, major and trace elements. In addition to the aforementioned legacy contaminants, new contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) such as flame retardant polybrominated biphnyl ethers (PBDEs) and pharmaceutics are being analyzed.
Organic and inorganic contaminants (n=140), Clostridium perfringens (pathogen) concentrations, oyster body size (cm) is included in the oyster histopathology analyses, depth (m), temperature (C), salinity (ppt), specific conductance (uohms), dissolved oxygen (mg/L, %)
NOTE: They will be redesigning the program somewhat given budget cuts and changes in monitoring priorities. Terminated nationally, still active in a few regions. 2010 is an estimated end date. There are several regions still active but the program is operating regionally as opposed to a nationally standardized assessment. Frequency specifics: winter annually, each site was collected every other year, sediment every 10 yrs Since 2014 Mussel Watch has switched to a rotating regional monitoring model so the next available data in FL after 2010 came in 2017 (Gulf Coast only).
to support ecosystem-based management through an integrated nationwide program of environmental monitoring, assessment and research to describe the status and trends of our nation’s estuaries and coasts
NCCOS NS&T Data Portal
About 8 oyster specimens selected for histopathology to be 7-10cm in shell height; whole specimens, sediment cores, sediment and bivalve tissue chemistry, bivalve histology
Annually through 2014 (only data through 2010 were available), next available data were from 2017.
Data Location
Data Format
ascii, Excel
NCCOS National Status & Trends data portal
Water Column Oyster/Oyster Reef
SEACAR Citation
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); Center for Coastal Monitoring and Assessment. (2000). National Status and Trends Mussel Watch. Updated 06/30/2020. Distributed by: SEACAR Data Discovery Interface, Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection, Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
Alternative Citation

indicates priority attributes

Dr. Greg Piniak

Export Standardized Data

Habitat(s) : Indicator(s) Last Updated File Download
Water Column : Water Quality 06/06/24 02:24 PM Download File - Discrete WQ -
DIP Document N/A Download File - DIP

Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection Managed Areas

Apalachicola Bay, Apalachicola NERR, Big Bend Seagrasses, Biscayne Bay, Boca Ciega Bay, Cape Romano-Ten Thousand Islands, Cockroach Bay, Coral ECA, Florida Keys NMS, Gasparilla Sound-Charlotte Harbor, Guana Tolomato Matanzas NERR, Indian River-Malabar to Vero Beach, Pinellas County, Rocky Bayou, Rookery Bay NERR, Terra Ceia, Yellow River Marsh


Water Column - Water Quality
Oyster/Oyster Reef - Size Class

Documentation and Data provided by program

File Type File Name Added On Details
Data Gulf-of-Mexico-2017.csv 03/09/20 04:46 PM View Details
Data 09/12/19 07:08 PM View Details
Data 09/28/18 04:01 PM View Details
GIS 09/28/18 04:01 PM View Details
Logo noaa.png 07/15/21 12:53 PM View Details
Protocols AllElse_Data_Dictionary.pdf 09/28/18 04:01 PM View Details
Protocols 09/28/18 04:01 PM View Details
Protocols noaa_16903_DS1.pdf 09/26/19 04:25 PM View Details