Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Eyes Over Puget Sound for August 18

By Sandy Howard, communication manager, Environmental Assessment Program

If you haven’t gotten up to the San Juans this summer, Eyes Over Puget Sound can take you there.

Our August cover shows a bird’s eye view of Sucia Island — looking like a giant downward-facing hand.

We saw an intense yellow-green phytoplankton bloom inside Fossil and Mud bays in this photo taken at 11:22 a.m. last Monday.

Sunshine and warm temperatures have returned after last week’s intense rain. 

We observed that the Puyallup and Nisqually rivers are flowing high. Red-brown blooms and numerous patches of jellyfish remain strong in South Sound, Sinclair and Dyes Inlets, and in Bellingham Bay. And we saw brown-green blooms in Whidbey Basin.

Macro-algae surface debris is very high in South and Central Sound. Hood Canal remains cooler but Puget Sound-wide temperatures are now warmer and less salty.

Sea surface temperatures are above 15 °C, conditions favorable for some pathogens, and harmful algae blooms.
Read about super colonies of by-the-wind sailors washing up on our shores. They are called Vellela vellela.

Eyes Over Puget Sound combines high-resolution photo observations with satellite images, en route ferry data between Seattle and Victoria BC, and measurements from our moored instruments.

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See the August issue of Eyes Over Puget Sound.

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