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News and Features by Region Gulf of Mexico Archives - News and Features

NOAA Embarks on Final Expedition to Investigate Coral Ecosystem Connectivity in Gulf of Mexico

Last week, a NOAA-funded investigation of the relatively healthy deep reefs of Pulley Ridge (off the southwest coast of Florida) began its fourth and final expedition. During the two-week mission, the team will launch a remotely operated vehicle from the University of Miami’s R/V F.G. Walton Smith to photograph benthic and fish communities and collect fish […]

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Origin of Toxic Red Tides in Texas Identified

New modelling research sponsored by NCCOS shows that Texas red tides originate in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico in the Bay of Campeche. These harmful algal blooms, caused by the dinoflagellate alga Karenia brevis, result in large fish kills, human respiratory irritation, and shellfishing closures in affected areas. Unlike red tides on the west coast […]

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Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone Larger than Predicted After Heavy June Rains

Scientists supported by NOAA NCCOS, EPA and the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative have mapped the size of the 2015 Gulf of Mexico low-oxygen dead zone. The areal extent of hypoxia measures approximately 6,474 square miles, about the size of Connecticut and Massachusetts combined, exceeding the prediction from June. Nutrient run off from agricultural and other human […]

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NCCOS Studies Effects of Dispersants and Weathered Oil

To study the impacts of dispersed oil on estuarine organisms and ecosystems, NCCOS scientists used tidal estuarine simulation units (called mesocosms) to mimic the conditions in an estuary affected by weathered crude oil. In the mesocosms, artificially weathered crude oil, with and without dispersants, was applied during three consecutive high tide events. The exposure phase lasted […]

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NCCOS Hypoxia Forecasts Prove Accurate

For over ten years NCCOS has developed and improved hypoxia (dead zone) forecasts similar to seasonal weather forecasts. The accuracy of these forecasts is proving to be quite good. Professor Don Scavia of the University of Michigan tracks the accuracy of the NCCOS-funded annual forecasts and finds the models work well in years without hurricanes or […]

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Prestigious Toxins Conference Features NCCOS Science

The 2015 Mycotoxins & Phycotoxins Conference, held June 14-19, 2015 at Stonehill College, Easton, Maine highlighted the latest research on prevention and mitigation of harmful algal blooms by a number of NCCOS sponsored scientists. The 2015 conference program included scientists funded by NCCOS through the Prevention, Control, and Mitigation of Harmful Algal Blooms (PCMHAB) Program: […]

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NOAA, partners predict an average ‘dead zone’ for Gulf of Mexico

Outlook incorporates multiple hypoxia models for first time Scientists are expecting that this year’s Gulf of Mexico hypoxic zone, also called the “dead zone,” will be approximately 5,483 square miles or about the size of Connecticut–the same as it has averaged over the last several years. The dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico affects […]

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Persistent Organic Pollutants Unlikely Cause of Dolphin Health Issues after Deepwater Horizon

NCCOS scientists reported that persistent organic pollutants (POPs) were likely not a contributing factor to the poor health conditions and increased mortality observed in some populations of bottlenose dolphins following the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill.  This study, recently published in the journal Science of the Total Environment, analyzed 169 remote biopsy samples that were […]

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