[Coral-List] Cold-water stresses on the Florida reef tract

Tom Opishinski iocean at cox.net
Thu Jan 14 18:12:04 EST 2010

Hi Lew,

Our station at the Smithsonian Marine Lab in Ft. Pierce recorded a low of ~
9.25 deg C in the IRL on 1/11.  A bit away from the corals but the record
nicely shows the cooling trend corresponding to a 10 deg C drop occurring
over a 2 week period.  Data can be accessed/viewed at
http://nmnhmp.riocean.com/fp_raw.php - the plot will default to show water
temperature then select "2 weeks" for the time period.


Tom Opishinski
Interactive Oceanographics
81 Shippee Road
East Greenwich, RI 02818

> -----Original Message-----
> From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> [mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov]On Behalf Of Lew Gramer
> Sent: Thursday, January 14, 2010 3:22 PM
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Subject: [Coral-List] Cold-water stresses on the Florida reef tract
> Extreme cold temperatures have been observed in near-shore waters of the
> Florida Keys by reef monitoring stations of the SEAKEYS/C-MAN
> network. NOAA's
> Coral Health and Monitoring Program via the Integrated Coral
> Observing Network
> (ICON: _http://ecoforecast.coral.noaa.gov_) project monitors near
> real-time
> data from these stations for conditions conducive to coral
> bleaching and other
> ecological impacts.  Recent reports have surfaced among
> scientists, resource
> managers, and the media of large-scale, multi-species fish kills that have
> been primarily limited to shallow-water environments in Florida
> and Biscayne Bay.
> Coral mortality has been reported from south Florida when water
> temperatures
> previously declined to 14 degrees Celsius, or below (Porter et al. 1982).
> While temperatures on offshore reef environments have been > 17-18 deg C
> (likely due to oceanic influence from the Florida Current),
> shallow-water and
> nearshore environments have fallen well below 14 deg C (e.g.,
> 10-11 deg C near
> Long Key).  It is expected that there will be some cold-water
> bleaching and
> potential for mortality in shallow-water corals and other reef
> organisms. If
> coral-list readers collect observations of bleaching or other cold-related
> stresses on reef organisms, please contact us at NOAA AOML in Miami.
> Sincerely yours,
> Lew Gramer, Jim Hendee, Derek Manzello
> NOAA Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory
> Reference
> Porter JW, Battey JF, Smith GJ (1982) Perturbation and change in
> coral reef
> communities. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 79:1678-1681
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