Coastal Geomorphology

ArcGIS applications for the Division of Sea Turtle Science and Recovery

Published by Toni Nicole Ramos, History Science Intern at the Padre Island National Seashore Division of Sea Turtle Science and Recovery

Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are listed as the most endangered and threatened species of all sea turtles. At the Division of Sea Turtle Science and Recovery within Padre Island National Seashore (PAIS), scientists are working steadfast to repopulate the Gulf of Mexico with our beloved Kemp’s ridley.

During my time here at PAIS, I will be conducting research on the coastal geomorphology here in south Texas, and its influence on Kemp’s ridley nesting site selections. This will consist of quantitative results gathered in the field- conductivity (salinity), temperature, elevation, shoreline distance, consolidation and grain size. Along with assessing light detection and ranging data (LiDAR), a remote sensing method used to examine earth surfaces. This will be imported into ArcGIS Pro and will depict the ideal nesting conditions for Kemp’s ridley. It will also serve as an ongoing tool for the Division of Sea Turtle Science and Recovery to gain better insight in specific regions to monitor during nesting seasons and whether any further action should be taken to ensure the endangered species are being protected.



The study of landforms and landform evolution.

This research will be a grand aspect of my time spent at PAIS. The project will be a unique experience for me as I will be learning more about coastal geomorphology in south Texas and incorporating this aspect of geology with sea turtle biology. In addition, I am learning the operations of endangered species laws and how it influences research.

As I continue to progress, I am using this as an opportunity to reach out to as many professionals and scientists as possible. It has been a wonderful networking opportunity as a young person entering the science industry.


Stay tuned for my next blog! Thank you for reading. Be sure to leave a like or a comment.

Geological Mapping of Texas by the Bureau of Economic Geology (BEG) at The University of Texas At Austin, TX.
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