Program Info

Seven types of Crassostrea virginica (Eastern Oyster) assemblages were mapped in Sarasota County Florida, USA, bays, estuaries and coastal creeks between the fall of 2008 and winter of 2012. Prior to this effort, projects had been conducted by the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program, Charlotte Harbor Estuary Program, Sea Grant, and Sarasota County to document historical oyster habitat and develop current maps depicting the location and extent of oyster habitat in county bays. But, there had been limited efforts to map oysters in coastal creeks. The goal of the project was to produce detailed baseline maps of all oyster assemblage types in Sarasota County bays, estuaries, and coastal creeks. The project objectives were to: 1) Locate and characterize the different types of oyster assemblages; 2) Create detailed baseline maps; 3) Develop “on-the-ground” rapid mapping techniques to complete the mapping process within a reasonable time frame; 4) Develop a Methods and Procedures Manual to allow duplication of efforts in other areas; 5) Identify upstream extent of oyster populations in coastal creeks; 6) Interpret the data using Geographical Information System (GIS) methodology; and 7) Analyze the data to identify potential habitat restoration sites. The project was completed in 2013 with GIS data analysis and interpretation. Scientists, watershed managers, citizens, and other stakeholders will be able to use the data to quantify oyster coverage in areas of interest for restoration efforts and as a baseline to compare with future assessments as alterations are made to watersheds that could impact oyster and estuarine ecosystem health.
Total coverage (acres), cover by oyster habitat type (acres), qualitative estimate of oyster population condition
to produce detailed baseline maps of all oyster assemblage types in Sarasota County bays, estuaries, and coastal creeks.
Sarasota County Water Atlas, reports, presentations
Oyster habitat within tidal creeks and bays in Sarasota County were systematically mapped over five years of boat surveys using maps and ArcGIS software. Oyster habitats were categorized by visual assessment of substrate/growth form and oyster population condition.
All creeks and bays were not mapped in a single season because of the amount of work involved; therefore some areas were mapped a year or more before/after others.
Data Location
Data Format
Oyster/Oyster Reef
SEACAR Citation
Sarasota County (Florida). (2012). Sarasota County Bays and Creeks Field Oyster Habitat Mapping Project. Updated 04/22/2022. Distributed by: SEACAR Data Discovery Interface, Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection, Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
Alternative Citation

indicates priority attributes


Program Extent

Export Standardized Data

Habitat(s) : Indicator(s) Last Updated File Download
Oyster/Oyster Reef : Acreage 07/08/24 01:20 PM Download File - Oyster Acreage -
DIP Document N/A Download File - DIP

Office of Resilience and Coastal Protection Managed Areas

Lemon Bay


Oyster/Oyster Reef - Acreage
Oyster/Oyster Reef - Additional Indicators

Documentation and Data provided by program

File Type File Name Added On Details
GIS 07/17/18 01:58 PM View Details
Logo logo-county-sarasota[1].png 07/15/21 01:21 PM View Details
Protocols SC-Oyster-Mapping-Report_6-2-2016.pdf 07/17/18 01:58 PM View Details