[Coral-List] Notice - high thermal stress in the vicinity of Pearl & Hermes Atoll in the NWHI

Gang Liu Gang.Liu at noaa.gov
Thu Sep 16 15:27:42 EDT 2004

Notice – high thermal stress in the vicinity of Pearl & Hermes Atoll in
the NWHI

Widespread bleaching with potential morality in Pearl and Hermes Atoll
has just been reported by Jake Asher and Rusty Brainard of NOAA
Fisheries’ Coral Reef Ecosystem Division.

CRW’s current DHW chart shows that the DHW value is 4.4 at the 50km
pixel covering Pearl & Hermes Atoll. Pearl and Hermes Atoll is right in
the center of a small scale intrusion (about 150 km across) of
anomalously high thermal stress accumulations that extended form the
north and across the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI).


The thermal stress started to develop to the north of the NWHI beginning
in mid-August but with only weak stress developing in the NWHI until
early-September when a wedge of stronger thermal stress started to
intrude across the NWHI at and near Pearl & Hermes Atoll.


If this thermal stress continues to develop in the NWHI, coral reefs in
Midway Atoll, Kure Atoll and reefs further south in the NWHI need to be
under bleaching “watch” conditions. Currently, DHW values are 1.5 in the
vicinity of Kure Atoll and 4.4 just to the east of Midway Atoll.

NOAA Coral Reef Watch Program
Sept 16, 2004

 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

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