Ecosystems Dynamics & Assessment : Current Conditions (Spring 2017)

Fall Bloom Development on the Northeast Shelf

There were well developed fall blooms detected in the Gulf of Maine and Scotian Shelf ecoregions, with both blooms starting early and lasting longer than the long term mean (see figures). Blooms could not be differentiated during the fall bloom time window in Georges Bank or the Middle Atlantic Bight, with apparent high chlorophyll concentrations in the December time frame on Georges Bank likely due to an artifact of poor sensor coverage during that month. The Gulf of Maine had average bloom chlorophyll levels in excess of 2 mg m-3 during the peak of the bloom, exceeding climatological levels on the order of 30%. The fall bloom in the Scotian Shelf ecoregion also exceeded the climatological levels; however, on a more modest level on the order of 20%. The composite depiction of the bloom pattern for the Northeast Shelf does not reflects the fall blooms in the Gulf of Maine and Scotia Shelf, instead simply reflects higher than average chlorophyll concentration.

Georges Bank
Gulf of Maine
Middle Atlantic Bight
Northeast Shelf
Scotian Shelf
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(File Modified Apr. 19 2017)