[Coral-List] Bleaching conditions continue in western Pacific and around Florida

Mark Eakin Mark.Eakin at noaa.gov
Fri Aug 17 10:16:42 EDT 2007

Western Pacific:
Abnormally warm waters continue in two regions of the western  
Pacific.  Warming has continued the region from the northern  
Philippines to the southern half of Taiwan.  Reports from Kenting  
National Park, Taiwan suggest that this is the worst bleaching in  
that region since 1998.  NOAA Coral Reef Watch data continue to  
indicate sea surface temperatures of 30-32 degrees; Coral Bleaching  
HotSpots reveal water temperatures of up to 2.4 degrees above the  
maximum monthly mean; and the accumulated thermal stress off the  
Luzon coast now has reached 15 degree-C weeks.

Another large region of heat stress extends from the Sea of Japan  
across Japan into the Pacific north of the Northern Mariana Islands.   
Fortunately, this is north of most major reef development.  The  
warming also extends south spanning the region between Kyushu and  
Shanghai and surrounding Chejudo Island.  This area has HotSpot  
values up to 2.2 degrees and thermal stress of 7.2 degree-C weeks.   
Temperature anomalies have dropped south of there, bringing a bit of  
relief to the Ryukyu and Yaeyama Islands where mass bleaching has  
already been reported.

The bad news is that waters around the Florida Bay and the waters off  
the western Bahamas continue to warm.  Degree Heating Week values  
have reached 8.8 for the Sombrero Reef Virtual Station.  We expect  
thermal stress at that site to reach a record level next week.  With  
hurricane Dean likely to pass south of Cuba, little cooling relief is  
likely at this time.

We have a new experimental Florida page that is serving as a model  
for other regions of the globe.  We expect to have a Caribbean page  
up shortly with more to follow.  The Florida page is at: http:// 

This and other new products can be found on our new experimental  
products page: http://coralreefwatch.noaa.gov/satellite/current/ 

  We would appreciate any feedback on these as we continue to improve  

Our 24 index sites around the globe can be found at:

Current HotSpot and Degree Heating Week charts, HDF data, and
GoogleEarth products can be found at:

Please report any bleaching observations from this region to the
Coral List and to ReefBase at http://www.reefbase.org/contribute/


C. Mark Eakin, Ph.D.
Coordinator, NOAA Coral Reef Watch
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Center for Satellite Applications and Research
Satellite Oceanography & Climate Division
e-mail: mark.eakin at noaa.gov
url: coralreefwatch.noaa.gov

E/RA31, SSMC1, Room 5308
1335 East West Highway
Silver Spring, MD 20910-3226
301-713-2857 x109                   Fax: 301-713-3136

More information about the Coral-List mailing list