USGS - science for a changing world

Data Series 1046

The Physical Characteristics of the Sediments on and Surrounding Dauphin Island, Alabama

By Alisha M. Ellis, Marci E. Marot, Christopher G. Smith, and Cathryn J. Wheaton

Skip Links

Citation Page
Field Data Collection
Laboratory Methods and Data Processing
Data Downloads
References Cited


Photograph of the dunes on Pelican Island, located on the south east side of Dauphin Island, taken from sample site DA369S in August 2015.
Photograph of the dunes on Pelican Island, located on the southeast side of Dauphin Island, taken from sample site DA369S in August 2015. Photograph by Alisha Ellis. [Click to enlarge]

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey, St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center collected 303 surface sediment samples from Dauphin Island, Alabama, and the surrounding water bodies in August 2015. These sediments were processed to determine physical characteristics such as organic content, bulk density, and grain-size. The environments where the sediments were collected include high and low salt marshes, washover deposits, dunes, beaches, sheltered bays, and open water. Sampling by the USGS was part of a larger study to assess the feasibility and sustainability of proposed restoration efforts for Dauphin Island, Alabama, and assess the island’s resilience to rising sea level and storm events. The data presented in this publication can be used by modelers to attempt validation of hindcast models and create predictive forecast models for both baseline conditions and storms. This study was funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, via the Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund.

This report serves as an archive for sedimentological data derived from surface sediments. Downloadable data are available as Excel spreadsheets, JPEG files, and formal Federal Geographic Data Committee metadata (data downloads).


This project is part of the Alabama Barrier Island Restoration Feasibility Study, which is a collaborative effort between the USGS, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and the State of Alabama funded by National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to investigate viable, sustainable restoration options that protect and restore the natural resources of Dauphin Island, Alabama.

The authors would like to thank BJ Reynolds, Paul Nelson, and Dann Blackwood for field assistance; Elsie McBride, and Shelby Stoneburner for assistance in the laboratory; and Nicholas Zaremba for processing data. We also appreciate the Web design assistance provided by Jolene Gittens of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and Kira Barrera and Justin Birchler for their prerelease commentary and peer review.

Information Statement

Although these data were processed successfully on a computer system at the U.S. Geological Survey, no warranty expressed or implied is made regarding the display or utility of the data on any other system, or for general or scientific purposes, nor shall the act of distribution imply any such warranty. The U.S. Geological Survey shall not be held liable for improper or incorrect use of the data described and (or) contained herein. Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

Suggested Citation

Ellis, A.M., Marot, M.E., Smith, C.G., and Wheaton, C.J., 2017, The physical characteristics of the sediments on and surrounding Dauphin Island, Alabama: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1046,


Alisha M. Ellis
U.S. Geological Survey
St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
600 4th Street South
St. Petersburg, FL 33701
(727) 502-8056

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
Page Contact Information: Contact USGS
Page Last Modified: Monday, June 26, 2017, 03:55:06 PM