[Coral-List] Gulf of Mexico Region Potential Bleaching Event -"Heads up"

Emma Hickerson Emma.Hickerson at noaa.gov
Fri Aug 20 14:01:38 EDT 2004

Thanks to Gang Liu for the "Heads up".

In response, the FGBNMS research team, with help from Eric Borneman (University
of Houston), conducted 8 baseline bleaching transects, each 25m long, 4 on both
the East and West Flower Garden Banks.  The initial transects took place on
August 7th (WFGB) and 9th (EFGB).  A second set of transects were conducted at
each of the Banks (following the same transect lines as previous) on August 16th
(WFGB) and 17th (EFGB).  Indicators of stress, such as low levels of paling,
were observed, but no bleaching was observed.  Sea surface temperatures at the
time of transects was approximately 89F, with temperatures on the reef at 81F
(WFGB) and 84F (EFGB).  We will continue to repeat these transects during the
high water temperatures.

Emma Hickerson
Research Coordinator
Flower Garden Banks NMS
979-836-5942, ext. 111

Gang Liu wrote:

> Gulf of Mexico Region Potential Bleaching Event - "Heads up"
> This summer has turned out to be a hot summer for the Gulf of Mexico.
> Anomalously high water temperatures have been developing in the Gulf
> since early July with the intensity of the anomaly increasing over time
> over most of the Gulf.
> http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/data/hotspotwnc.gif
> http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/data/hotspotw.8.3.2004.gif
> http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/climohot.html
> The northern and eastern parts of the gulf are experiencing the most
> intense thermal stress. These are where the Flower Garden Banks National
> Marine Sanctuary and Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary are located,
> respectively. Coral Reef Watch's satellite monitoring shows that the
> accumulated thermal stress has reached up to 3 DHWs in a large area in
> the northern gulf around Flower Garden Banks and 4 DHWs in a large area
> in the southeastern gulf around Florida Keys.
> http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/data2/dhwa.8.3.2004.gif
> http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/dhw_retro.html
> The most current satellite sea surface temperature time series at a
> pixel near Sombrero Reef, Florida shows the increasing temperature:
> http://coralreefwatch.noaa.gov/satellite/current/sst_series_sombrero_cur.html
> If these thermal stresses persist, coral bleaching is expected in these
> areas.
> For more information please visit Coral Reef Watch's satellite bleaching
> monitoring website:
> http://coralreefwatch.noaa.gov/satellite
> --------------------------------------------------
> Any feedback you can provide is useful: both bleaching and non-bleaching
> observations are welcome. Please send the feedback to Alan Strong
> (Alan.E.Strong at noaa.gov) and/or Gang Liu (Gang.Liu at noaa.gov). Users are
> also encouraged to use the NOAA/ReefBase collaborative online bleaching
> report form to send input to our bleaching database. The form is
> available at http://www.reefbase.org/input/bleachingreport/index.asp
> -------------------------------------------------
> August 4, 2004
> NOAA Coral Reef Watch Program
> (coralreefwatch.noaa.gov)
> =========================================
>  Gang Liu, Ph.D.
>  Senior Research Scientist/Oceanographer
>  (STG, Inc.)
>  NOAA Coral Reef Watch Program
>  SSMC1, #5310
>  1335 East-West Highway
>  Silver Spring, MD 20910-3226
>  Tel: 301-713-9386 ext 131
>  Fax: 301-713-3136
>  Email: Gang.Liu at noaa.gov
> =========================================
> _______________________________________________
> Coral-List mailing list
> Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list


Emma L. Hickerson
Research Coordinator
emma.hickerson at noaa.gov

Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary
1200 Briarcrest Drive, Ste. 4000
Bryan, TX  77802
PH:  979-846-5942, ext. 111
FAX:  979-846-5959


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