Mapping Eelgrass

This project aims to map eelgrass in the Comox Estuary and to contribute to blue carbon research in BC.

Project Dates: July 2015 – January 2016
Funding Amount: $25,000
Students Hired: 2

NIC student and diver preparing to conduct field work in the estuary.

Project Summary

Eelgrass provides critical habitat to estuarine inhabitants and foreshore resilience to storm surges.

North Island College conducted a research project to map eelgrass distribution in Comox Estuary and to provide important spatial data for Pentlatch Seafoods Ltd. to inform their shellfish operations. The information also contributed to the larger Blue Carbon project carried out by the Comox Valley Project Watershed by providing an estimation of the capacity of the estuary to sequester carbon.

Project Outcomes

Having information regarding the location of subtidal eelgrass beds in relation to their shellfish leases will allow Pentlatch Seafoods Ltd. to plan for future expansion of production capacity and remain competitive in the global market.

Research Team

Christine Hodgson
Christine Hodgson, Lead Researcher
Christine is an educator who has a strong background in science research with a specialty in marine shellfish aquaculture. We had worked as a volunteer for two environmental stewardship organizations located in the Comox Valley. Christine is the lead scientist for the Comox Valley Project Watershed.
Sarah Wilkinson
Sarah Wilkinson, Biology Student
Jamie Lund
Jamie Lund, Biology Student



Naomi Tabata
Naomi Tabata, CARTI manager