With its lush greenery and protected estuarine waters, Hudson River Park serves as a much-needed habitat and travel corridor for numerous fishes, birds, crustaceans and insects. Monitoring the frequency with which these animals use the Park’s land and waters provides valuable information about the health and future of these populations.

Information gathered from Hudson River Park’s environmental monitoring initiatives helps Park managers make informed decisions about Park management and operations. In addition, these environmental monitoring projects are opportunities for students and the public to engage with the Park’s River Project in interactive, hands-on ways. Data from these projects also supports larger research initiatives that are helping protect and restore wildlife and natural resources on local, regional and national levels.

List of Current Research Projects

river project fish floating dock at Hudson River Park

Hudson River Park’s Estuarine Sanctuary is home to over 85 species of fish. The Park monitors the presence and diversity of fish year-round using multiple surveying methods, including a fish collection survey and environmental DNA research.

Volunteers help clean up plastics along the shoreline

Plastic pollution harms our local waterways and wildlife. The Park is committed to addressing this issue through microplastic research, shoreline debris surveys and the Park Over Plastic initiative.

Hands holding a vial containing microplastics Hudson River Park

Microplastics, plastics smaller than 5mm, are an emerging environmental issue that scientists are surveying to understand how they impact waters and wildlife world-wide.

A researcher measures a new oyster pulled from the river

Oysters are filter feeders that clean waterways, protect our shorelines and build habitat. The Park leads several studies to research and restore this keystone species in the Estuarine Sanctuary.

Two researchers example the water that was pulled from the River

For 20 weeks starting in May, nearly 70 volunteer citizen scientists from local boathouses and community groups collect weekly water samples for the Citizens’ Water Quality Testing Program (CWQTP) at boat launches and docks from Yonkers to Jamaica bay.

A scientist fills a jar with water for sampling

The Hudson River is a dynamic system, and the Park measures local water quality using two continuous monitoring stations in the Park and a seasonal study on pathogens in the Estuary.