River Herring & Eel Survey
About the Long Island Volunteer
River Herring & Eel Survey
The annual Long Island Volunteer River Herring & Eel Survey is one of Long Island’s longest running community science projects. Started in 2006, the survey engages community volunteer scientists to monitor runs of migratory river herring and American eels in rivers and streams across Long Island. The survey, organized by Seatuck and our partners at the Long Island Sound Study, Peconic Estuary Program and South Shore Estuary Reserve – aims to find the waterways where “remnant” runs of river herring still exist and then to monitor the size and timing of those runs. This information is vital to improve access and restore local populations of these ecologically important fish. Learn more about Diadromous Fish across Long Island here.
Participants in the survey are asked to commit to surveying a local waterway from mid-March through mid-May. The survey protocol involves visiting a neighborhood river or stream and spending 15 minutes looking for river herring or signs of their presence. The visits can occur daily, weekly or as often as possible. All data is good data – the more trained eyes we have on the water, the better! Observations and information from the survey visit are then submitted through an easy-to-use on-line application on your computer or mobile device and automatically becomes part of our study. The online app helps you to geo-locate your survey location and even submit photos.
Helpful Resources for the 2021 Survey Season:
- Long Island River Herring & Eel Survey Monitoring Protocol
- North Shore & Long Island Sound Stream Guide
- East End Stream Guide
- South Shore Stream Guide
- River Revival Map
- Long Island River Herring & Eel Survey Facebook Group
- A recorded version of the 2021 River Herring & Eel monitoring training can be found at the bottom of this page.
- A recorded presentation by Kellie McCartin, Suffolk Community College entitled “Run Size Estimation and Temporal Trends of Alewife Migration in the Peconic” is also available a the bottom of the page.
Accessing the Survey 1-2-3 Mobile Field App
- Download the free Survey 123 mobile app on your mobile device
- Scan the QR code on the left using your phone’s camera (If you are already on a mobile device click the link here https://arcg.is/5qaXO and continue to steps 4 & 5)
- Click the top banner notification to open ArcGIS
- Choose “Open in the Survey 123 field app”, and “Open this page in Survey 123”
- Choose “Continue without signing in”
In September 2019, in a widely reported article appearing in Science magazine, researchers documented a significant decline in the overall abundance of birds in North America. Studies showed a 29% reduction birds since 1970, totaling approximately 3 billion birds. Some bird groups – such as grassland birds – have declined even more precipitously, dropping by more than half.