SAV Survey

Why Do I Need an Eelgrass Survey?

Don't Drown in Dock Project Regulations

Homeowners seeking permission from the RI CRMC to construct a dock in tidal waters may need to have an eelgrass survey performed. The CRMC regulatory terminology for this procedure is a Submerged Aquatic Vegetation, or SAV survey. Eelgrass (Zostera marina) is the most common and ecologically valuable SAV found in RI coastal waters, primarily occurring within Narragansett Bay and the coastal ponds.

The Survey Process

NRS has developed an SAV survey methodology which satisfies the CRMC regulatory criteria and is also cost effective for the homeowner. A snorkel survey of the proposed dock location is performed with vegetative sampling plots established at 25 foot intervals. This simple grid survey can be completed by a NRS two person team in a single day. The data collected is then used to create a GIS graphic depicting the location and size of any eelgrass beds in the study area. The survey is provided to the homeowner's dock designer who then submits it as a required element of the CRMC application.

Your SAV Survey Experts:

An NRS staff biologist is responsible for coordinating a SAV survey. The CRMC regulations mandate that the surveys be conducted between July 1st and September 1st of any calendar year. Eelgrass survey dates fill up fast due to this limited 2 month window. Call or email NRS Wetlands if you have any questions about SAV or to schedule a survey.

Have a question about our eelgrass survey services? Call 401-568-7390 or click the button below to send us an email...