Bathymetric data are currently used inter alia to define management boundaries, implement conservation measures, allocate catch among areas, estimate spatial impacts due to fishing, and inform ecosystem-based management through bioregionalisation. Several data sources for bathymetric data exist, and these sources improve with time through additional data collection and improved analytical methods. We developed an algorithm to summarize bathymetric point data (x,y,z) for the Ross Sea region to provide a transparent and citable method to derive standard summary statistics for use by CCAMLR. This is especially important because of the multinational use of such data. The method is applicable to the entire Southern Ocean, but is currently applied only to the Ross Sea region. We have obtained publically available bathymetric data, created a spatial database, and have developed scripts for defining polygons of user-specified bathymetric areas, calculating the areas of those polygons, and displaying them as contour maps. As data sources improve, this process can update the summary statistics as needed in a comparable and transparent manner.
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