GET INVOLVED

Thank you for your interest in our annual survey of spawning horseshoe crabs. By participating in the educational aspects of this project you will help us collect data and to acquire biological information on horseshoe crabs in New York’s Marine District. This data will be used by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation to assess the status of horseshoe crabs in New York’s Marine District, and to assist with the regional management and conservation of this species through the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission.


If you participate in this educational survey you will be helping to collect data on horseshoe crab spawning abundance, size, sex and tag returns around full and new moon evenings from May to July. Trained site coordinators will be present to educate and teach you about the survey, however, it is important that you take the time to follow the instructions below and contact your site coordinator before showing up to the survey.  By doing so, you will be better prepared and help make the survey run efficiently and learn about the stewardship of horseshoe crabs.














The Essentials



All participants MUST:


  1. Determine which monitoring site you are interested in participating at, and then contact the site coordinator(s) to schedule a date. The number of volunteers will be limited this year due to COVID-19, so pre-registration with the site coordinators is mandatory.


  1. Complete the daily Volunteer Health Screening and Attestation form every day that volunteer activities are scheduled. Please submit your form to your site coordinator prior to arrival at the volunteer site.


  1. Sign-in at their volunteer site with their name, phone number, and email address.


  1. Follow strict COVID-19 Safety Protocols including wearing a mask/face covering, maintaining a social distance of at least 6ft apart, and avoid sharing objects. Hand sanitizer and extra gloves and masks will be available if needed.


  1. Children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.


  1. Download the appropriate monitoring protocol and read before meeting at the survey site.


  1. Wear appropriate clothing for night walks. Foul weather and wet conditions at the water’s edge may require appropriate attire. Consider using sunscreen during the day and insect repellent at night.


  1. IF THUNDERSTORMS ARE PRESENT OR CONDITIONS ARE UNSAFE, DO NOT GO ONTO THE BEACH. The site coordinator will determine if the survey should be canceled.


  1. Bring a headlamp or flashlight. Headlamps are useful because they free up both hands. 


  1. Bring a clipboard and a couple of pencils.


  1. Work gloves may be useful if there are high densities of horseshoe crabs on the beach, as you may have to occasionally lift animals up to count those underneath.


  1. NO BARE FEET!  Shoes are a necessity. We recommend rubber boots, water shoes, or old sneakers.


  1. An accurate wristwatch to record arrival time, and survey start and finish times.


  1. Cell phone for emergencies or calling lead coordinator(s) for assistance with problems.

Important Notice: Thank you for your interest in the NYS horseshoe crab monitoring program. We are currently planning the 2021 monitoring season and hope to have some limited volunteer participation given the most current information on Covid-19. We will update the program website as soon as possible with more information.

CHECK LIST:

 Contact the site coordinator prior to the survey night(s) of interest to schedule with them.

 Fill out and submit the Volunteer Health Screening and Attestation form to the site coordinator every day that you volunteer.

Download and read the Volunteer COVID-19 Protocol.

 Download and read the monitoring protocol for the appropriate site.

 Dress accordingly

 Bring a flashlight or headlamp

CHECK LIST:


  1. 1. Contact the site coordinator prior to the survey night(s) of interest to schedule with them.


  1. 2. Fill out and submit the Volunteer Health Screening and Attestation form to the site coordinator every day that you volunteer.


  1. 3.Download and read the Volunteer COVID-19 Protocol.


  1. 4. Download and read the monitoring protocol for the appropriate site.


  1. 5. Dress accordingly


  1. 6. Bring a flashlight or headlamp