Florida Keys Bleaching & CREWS

Jim Hendee hendee at aoml.noaa.gov
Wed Jun 17 08:41:30 EDT 1998

Dear Coral-Listers,

As corroborating evidence of Al Strong's message on the possibility
(probability) of coral bleaching in the Florida Keys, our Coral Reef Early
Warning System (CREWS, a marine environmental expert system which utilizes
data from the Florida Institute of Oceanography's [NOAA-sponsored] SEAKEYS
network) at URL: 


has predicted/reported conditions conducive to coral bleaching at Sombrero
Key (based on temps > 29degC and "low winds") since June 1, and Walt Jaap
(personal communication) has just recently noted that "...the signs of
bleaching were evident."  Dive shop owners have also reported bleaching
signs.  The temperatures have just reached 32degC.  We (Chris Humphrey,
Trent Moore [FIO] and I) will hopefully be checking on the reef again this

Please see the URL for reports since June 1 (and daily, after 6:30am EST)
and feel free to offer any feedback to further fine-tune the system, which
still has quite a bit of refinement ahead.  If you'd like to be sent the 
automated bleaching alert reports, please drop a line.  Reports are only 
sent if the "production rules" have been triggered within the last seven 

New sensors to be installed next month at Sombrero Key will include
Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR), fluorometry and
transmissometry, and these readings (as well as satellite data, hopefully)
will be incorporated into CREWS, as well as into other marine
environmental near real-time interpretations. 

For more information on SEAKEYS, see URL:



	Jim Hendee

| James C. Hendee            | Internet:     hendee at aoml.noaa.gov|
| Coral Health and           |                                   |
|   Monitoring Program       | Voice:        305 361-4396        |
| Ocean Chemistry Division   | Fax:          305 361-4392        |
| NOAA/AOML                  |                                   |
| 4301 Rickenbacker Causeway |                                   |
| Miami, FL  33149-1026      | http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov        |

On Tue, 16 Jun 1998 astrong at nesdis.noaa.gov wrote:

> Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 15:55:17 -0400
> From: astrong at nesdis.noaa.gov
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Subject: Florida Keys -- Bleaching
> HotSpots have enveloped the Florida Bay and the Keys on today's chart:
>    http://psbsgi1.nesdis.noaa.gov:8080/PSB/EPS/SST/data/hotspotw.6.16.1998.gif
> With any continued absence of cloud cover [and light winds] areas of the 
> Caribbean may be in for an increase in water temperatures and possible 
> bleaching.  Much of the Caribbean is within 0.5 deg C of levels critical for 
> initiating coral reef bleaching. [Ref: pinks & blues in the HotSpot charts].
> Luckily, winds have been pretty brisk south of 20N:
> Cheers,
> Al
> **** <>< ******* <>< ******* <>< ******* <>< ******* <>< ******* <>< *****
> Alan E. Strong
>   Phys Scientist/Oceanographer                    Adj Assoc Res Professor
>   NOAA/NESDIS/ORA/ORAD -- E/RA3                    US Naval Academy
>   NOAA Science Center -- RM 711W                    Oceanography Department
>   5200 Auth Road                                        Annapolis, MD 21402
>   Camp Springs, MD 20746                              410-293-6550
>         Alan.E.Strong at noaa.gov
>   301-763-8102 x170    FAX: 301-763-8108
>           http://manati.wwb.noaa.gov/orad

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