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Project Information

Title: Long-term Monitoring of Oceanographic Conditions in the Alaska Coastal Current from Hydrographic Station GAK-1

Project Year and Number: 2019: 19120114-I

Other Fiscal Years and Numbers for this Project: None

Principal Investigator (PI): Seth Danielson, University of Alaska Fairbanks

Assisting Personnel: Tom Weingartner

Research Location:

Restoration Category: Monitoring

Injured Resources Addressed: Barrow's Goldeneye , Black Oystercatchers , Clams , Commercial Fishing , Common Loons , Common Murres , Harlequin Ducks , Intertidal Organisms , Killer Whales , Kittlitz's Murrelets , Marbled Murrelets , Mussels , Pacific Herring , Pigeon Guillemot , Pink Salmon , Rockfish , Sea Otters , Sediments , Sockeye Salmon , Subsistence , Subtidal Organisms

Abstract: This project continues a 45-year time-series of temperature and salinity measurements at hydrographic station GAK-1. The data set, which began in 1970, now consists of quasi-monthly conductivity-temperature versus depth casts and a mooring outfitted with seven temperature/conductivity recorders distributed throughout the water column and a fluorometer at 20 m depth. The project monitors five important Alaska Coastal Current (ACC) ecosystem parameters that quantify and help us understand hourly to seasonal, interannual, and multi-decadal period variability in: 1) temperature and salinity throughout the 250 m-deep water column, 2) near surface stratification, 3) surface pressure fluctuations, 4) fluorescence as an index of phytoplankton biomass, and 5) along-shelf transport in the ACC. All of these parameters are basic descriptors that characterize the workings of the inner shelf and the ACC, an important habitat and migratory corridor for organisms inhabiting the northern Gulf of Alaska, including Prince William Sound and resources injured by the Exxon Valdez oil spill. We are aware of 69 publications utilizing data collected at station GAK-1, and since 2000 the citation list has grown by nearly three publications per year. Topics covered by these publications range from physical oceanography and climate through trophic (including commercial fisheries) level components and ecosystem analyses. Recent water temperatures have returned to average in the upper 100 m, but warmer than average water remains below 100 m. A recently awarded National Science Foundation Long-term Ecological Research program (awarded to Gulf Watch Alaska principal investigators R. Hopcroft and S. Danielson) will leverage and compliment this and other environmental drivers sampling within Gulf Watch Alaska. We are not proposing any major changes to this project in FY19.


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Proposal: View PDF (290 KB)

Funding Recommendations: View

Funding Detail For: 2019

Quarterly Project Tasks For: 2019

Annual Report: 2019: Due 03/01/2020

Final Report: Draft Final Report Due 4/15/20

Publications from this Project: None Available