Environmental Consulting & Engineering Services - from Concept to Reality

Natural Resources & Ecology

Case Study

RIDEM Biomonitoring
RIDEM Biomonitoring

Since 2002, ESS has provided the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) with annual aquatic monitoring services at hundreds of locations.
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I have been very pleased with each of the projects I have worked on with ESS. From training volunteers in the field to lab work to filing Notices of Intent for lake management projects, all have gone perfectly. The deliverables have always been very thorough, professional, and well-crafted, leaving little room for comment. I look forward to our next project.

Tom Flannery, Aquatic Ecologist, Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, Lakes and Ponds Program

Fisheries & Benthic Resources

BiomonitoringESS has conducted aquatic resource assessments and fisheries evaluations throughout the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Our staff have degrees in aquatic ecology, freshwater biology, fisheries, marine biology, and resource ecology. Our fisheries and benthic resource experience includes conducting field surveys, evaluating habitats, assessing impacts, preparing restoration and mitigation plans, and implementing biomonitoring programs.

ESS fisheries & benthic resources services include:

  • Sampling and Monitoring Program Design
  • Biomonitoring
  • Fish Surveys
  • Clean Water Act Section 316(b) Compliance
  • Impingement and Entrainment Studies
  • Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) Assessments
  • Section 7 Threatened and Endangered Species Consultations
  • Benthic Macroinvertebrate Surveys
  • Aquatic Habitat Restoration
  • Marine Species Monitoring
  • Coral Reef Surveys
  • Quality Assurance Project Plans (QAPPs)
  • Quantitative and Qualitative Natural Community Analyses
  • Mitigation Planning and Design

Impingement & Entrainment Studies

ESS staff have conducted fisheries and benthic impingement, entrainment, and mortality studies for cooling water intake structures, water discharge structures, hydroelectric facilities, dams, and fishways. Our ecologists and scientists are familiar with the regulatory requirements of the Clean Water Act Section 316(b) rules and the various technology and operational measures that facilities can implement as cost-effective solutions for protecting fish at cooling water intakes. ESS can support our clients with addressing these impingement and entrainment issues by providing independent peer review of proposed study programs and compliance demonstrations, developing reasonable and defensible compliance strategies, as well as implementing technically sound fish sampling programs, in particular entrainment characterization studies.


ESS has implemented biological surveys in a variety of freshwater, estuarine, and marine environments. Whether the target is fish, shellfish, or aquatic macroinvertebrates, we have the field expertise and technical resources to efficiently execute biomonitorig surveys for a wide range of aquatic communities. ESS conducts most biological field and laboratory work using in-house resources, which allows us to directly offer a wide variety of services at a competitive price. In addition to field identification of fish, shellfish, and vegetation, ESS identifies marine and freshwater invertebrates collected from benthic samples in our own lab, which is overseen by a North American Benthological Society Certified Taxonomist.