Bleaching: Alerts

Alan E Strong Alan.E.Strong at
Wed Jul 3 15:29:15 EDT 2002


As we continue to move towards what is looking to be a weak El Nino,
there are two regions of the coral world that probably require our
attention regarding mass bleaching events:


The Gulf of Oman is very hot at present.  This hot water is mostly
centred near Muscat and those reefs within 100 km of Muscat are
currently experiencing a HotSpot of 2 deg C and a DHW or 8 to 9 (Degree
Heating Weeks).  This is DHW is second only to 1998 when it managed to
get up to 16 at the same time of the year.

The effect of the tongue of hot water extending westward along the
equator from South America (a typical ENSO signal) is creating a
potentially problematic situation in the western central Pacific, where
the lower half of the Kingsmill Group (south west of the Gilbert Islands

and in Kiribati) is currently experiencing a HotSpot of 1.25 deg C and
has already accumulated a DHW of 11.

This tongue of hot water is causing some concern for many reef regions
right along its path.  For example Howland and Baker Islands have a
HotSpot value of 1.25 deg C and have accumulated a DHW of 8, whereas
Kiritmati has a HotSpot value of 0.5 and has accumulated a DHW of 9.
These values are also repeated at various sites along the equator
between these locations.

William Skirving
Al Strong
NOAA's Coral Reef Watch Program

**** <>< ******* <>< ******* <>< ******* <>< *******
Alan E. Strong
Team Leader, Marine Applications Science Team (MAST)
Coral Reef Watch Project Coordinator
Phys Scientist/Oceanographer
  NOAA Science Center -- RM 711W
  5200 Auth Road
  Camp Springs, MD 20746-4304
        Alan.E.Strong at
             301-763-8102 x170
              FAX: 301-763-8572


  Alan E. Strong, Ph. D. <Alan.E.Strong at>
  Oceanographer/Team Leader
  Oceanic Research & Applications Division

  Alan E. Strong, Ph. D.
  Oceanographer/Team Leader                 <Alan.E.Strong at>
  Oceanic Research & Applications Division
  NOAA Science Center 5200 Auth Road        Cellular: 443-822-3668
  Camp Springs                              Fax: 301-763-8108
  MD                                        Work: 301-763-8102 x170
  Additional Information:
  Last Name     Strong
  First Name    Alan E.
  Version       2.1

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