NOAA, partners to report on 2020 Gulf of Mexico ‘dead zone’ monitoring cruise
NOAA and its partners will report on their recent research cruise to measure the extent of the hypoxic or “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico during a media teleconference on Tue., Aug. 4 at 11:00 a.m. EDT.
In June, NOAA scientists forecasted this summer’s dead zone – an area of low to no oxygen that can kill fish and other marine life – to be approximately 6,700 square miles. That is larger than the long-term average measured size of 5,387 square miles, but substantially less than the record of 8,776 square miles set in 2017.
Larger-than-average ‘dead zone’ expected for Gulf of Mexico
"NOAA scientists are forecasting this summer’s Gulf of Mexico hypoxic area or “dead zone” – an area of low to no oxygen that can kill fish and other marine life – to be approximately 6,700 square miles, larger than the long-term average measured size of 5,387 square miles but substantially less than the record of 8,776 square miles set in 2017. The annual prediction is based on U.S. Geological Survey river-flow and nutrient data. [...]"
Effects of spatial variability on the exposure of fish to hypoxia: a modeling analysis for the Gulf of Mexico
"The hypoxic zone in the northern Gulf of Mexico varies spatially (area, location) and temporally (onset, duration) on multiple scales. Exposure to hypoxic dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations (< 2 mg L−1) is often lethal and exposure to 2 to 4 mg L−1 often causes the sublethal effects of decreased growth and fecundity on individuals of many fish species. We simulated the movement of individual fish within a high-resolution 3-D coupled hydrodynamic-water quality model (FVCOM-WASP) configured for the northern Gulf of Mexico to examine how spatial variability in DO concentrations would affect fish exposure to hypoxic and sublethal DO concentrations. [...]"
Authors: Elizabeth D. LaBone et al.
Implications of different nitrogen input sources for potential production and carbon flux estimates in the coastal Gulf of Mexico (GOM)
and Korean Peninsula coastal waters
"The coastal Gulf of Mexico (GOM) and coastal sea off the Korean Peninsula (CSK) both suffer from human-induced eutrophication. We used a nitrogen (N) mass balance model in two different regions with different nitrogen input sources to estimate organic carbon fluxes and predict future carbon fluxes under different model scenarios. The coastal GOM receives nitrogen predominantly from the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers and atmospheric nitrogen deposition is only a minor component in this region. [...]"
Source: Ocean Science
Authors: Jongsun Kim et al.
Fish Diet Shifts Associated with the Northern Gulf of Mexico Hypoxic Zone
"The occurrence of low dissolved oxygen (hypoxia) in coastal waters may alter trophic interactions within the water column. This study identified a threshold at which hypoxia in the northern Gulf of Mexico (NGOMEX) alters composition of fish catch and diet composition (stomach contents) of fishes using fish trawl data from summers 2006–2008. Hypoxia in the NGOMEX impacted fish catch per unit effort (CPUE) and diet below dissolved oxygen thresholds of 1.15 mg L−1 (for fish CPUE) and 1.71 mg L−1 (for diet). CPUE of many fish species was lower at hypoxic sites (≤ 1.15 mg L −1) as compared to normoxic regions (> 1.15 mg L −1), including the key recreational or commercial fish species Atlantic croaker Micropogonias undulatus and red snapper Lutjanus campechanus. [...]"
Source: Estuaries and Coasts
Authors: Cassandra N. Glaspie et al.
Larval Fish Habitats and Deoxygenation in the Northern Limit of the Oxygen Minimum Zone off Mexico
"The present state of deoxygenation in the northern limits of the shallow oxygen minimum zone off Mexico is examined in order to detect its effects on larval fish habitats and consider the sensitivity of fish larvae to decreased dissolved oxygen. A series of cruises between 2000 and 2017 indicated a significant vertical expansion of low oxygen waters. The upper limit of suboxic conditions (<4.4 μmol/kg) has risen ~100 m at 19.5°N off Cabo Corrientes and ~50 m at 25°N in the mouth of the Gulf of California. The larval habitat distribution was related to the geographic variability of dissolved oxygen and water masses between these two latitudes. [...]"
Source: JGR Oceans
Authors: Laura Sánchez‐Velasco et al.
Coral Mortality Event in the Flower Garden Banks of the Gulf of Mexico in July 2016: Local Hypoxia due to Cross-Shelf Transport of Coastal Flood Water
"Remotely sensed and in situ data, in tandem with numerical modeling, are used to explore the causes of an episode of localized but severe mortality of corals, sponges, and other invertebrates at the Flower Garden Banks (FGB) National Marine Sanctuary in July 2016. [...]"
Source: Continental Shelf Research
Authors: Matthieu Le Hénaff et al.
A New Characterization of the Upper Waters of the central Gulf of México based on Water Mass Hydrographic and Biogeochemical Characteristics
" In the Gulf of Mexico (GoM) at least three near-surface water masses are affected by mesoscale processes that modulate the biogeochemical cycles. Prior studies have presented different classifications of water masses where the greater emphasis was on deep waters and not on the surface waters (σθ < 26 kg m−3), as in this work. Here presents a new classification of water masses in the GoM, based on thermohaline properties and dissolved oxygen (DO) concentration using data from a total of five summer and winter cruises carried out primarily in the central GoM. [...]"
Authors: Gabriela Yareli Cervantes-Diaz et al.
Quantifying the Relative Importance of Riverine and Open‐Ocean Nitrogen Sources for Hypoxia Formation in the Northern Gulf of Mexico
"The Mississippi and Atchafalaya River System discharges large amounts of freshwater and nutrients into the northern Gulf of Mexico (NGoM). These lead to increased stratification and elevate primary production in the outflow region. Consequently, hypoxia (oxygen <62.5 mmol/m3), extending over an area of roughly 15,000 km2, forms every summer in bottom waters. [...]"
Source: JGR Oceans
Authors: Fabian Große et al.
Large ‘dead zone’ measured in Gulf of Mexico
Hurricane Barry dampens initial size predictions
"This year’s Gulf of Mexico “dead zone”— an area of low oxygen that can kill fish and marine life — is approximately 6,952 square miles, according to NOAA-supported scientists. The measured size of the dead zone, also called the hypoxic zone, is the 8th largest in the 33-year record and exceeds the 5,770-square-mile average from the past five years. [...]"