|Click to view the May report here|
Our marine monitoring team goes out several times a month to check the pulse of Puget Sound and Washington's coastal bays. Once a month, we bring you Eyes over Puget Sound. Because of their work, it's common for them to get the question:
How's the water quality in Puget Sound?
Visit the field impressions section of this month's Eyes Over Puget Sound report to learn answers to these questions and dive deeper into the discussion.
But really, how's the water?
|Scroll through to see images from the flight, or|
follow the link to Flickr to view the entire album.
Our sunny and dry spring means air temperatures are higher than usual for this time of year. We're seeing these temps 7 °F warmer than typical in the mountains, which means the snowpack we built over the winter is quickly disappearing. Our rivers that are fed by snow-melt are running very high.
How does warm weather affect water quality in Puget Sound?Sunny weather means lots of growth! We observed a strong spring phytoplankton bloom extend across Puget Sound and through the Strait of Juan de Fuca. This high growth of plankton, algae and plant matter was evident across the Sound in large floating mats of organic debris.
Often, this material ends up on our beaches looking like strange waves of seaweed and muck. Sometimes, these mats of plants begin to decompose on beaches and cause a stinky mess.
Learn more in our field impressions section of the report. Read about marine sediment animals monthly by following our Critter of the Month blog series.