Research and monitoring are founded on competent data acquisition. Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary maintains a variety of monitoring tools to perform a diverse suite of sampling. This diversity in capacity allows us to address ongoing needs, as well as new and emerging issues that require scientific data to resolve.
The sanctuary operates the 62 foot research vessel Shearwater and the 28 foot research vessel Shark Cat to support research, resource protection, education, and maritime heritage within the sanctuary.
Diving operations support a better understanding of maritime heritage resources and marine resources including assessments of ecosystem and climate characteristics, marine protected area performance, recovery of marine species, and technology tools.
The sanctuary staff flies monthly surveys of the Santa Barbara Channel Traffic Separation Scheme to better understand large whale distribution and density within shipping lanes.
Sanctuary staff have experience and expertise with programming, operating, and maintaining various uncrewed technologies, including remotely operated vehicles (ROV), uncrewed aircraft systems (UAS), and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV).