The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources entered into a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Geological Survey in 1998 to install, operate and maintain constant recorder instrumentation sites in the Mississippi Sound. The objective is to provide hydrological data and real-time access for monitoring and managing Mississippi’s oyster reefs and other marine species and their habitats. Through the combined efforts of MDMR Office of Marine Fisheries and USGS personnel, instrumentation sites have been established at the Biloxi East Channel Front Range Light, Biloxi’s Back Bay at Point Cadet and Popp’s Ferry Bridge, East Ship Island, Gulfport Light, the Pascagoula River at Pascagoula and the West Pascagoula River at Gautier, Round Island Light, the Jourdan River at Kiln, Old Fort Bayou at Ocean Springs, Merrill Shell Light, St. Joe Light, and the East Pearl River.

Hydrological monitoring and real time access to the data is valuable to Mississippi’s marine resource management. This project will notably advance our understanding of the Mississippi Sound’s hydrology affecting biological populations and their corresponding marine habitats thus enhancing marine fisheries management capabilities.