The Seward Line is a long-term observation program (LTOP) undertaken from 1998-2004 by the Northeast Pacific GLOBEC program, and continued from 2005-2009 by the North Pacific Research Board. It is now funded by a concortium of NPRB, AOOS, NOAA and EVOS.
The purpose of this research is to develop an understanding of the response of this marine ecosystem to climate variability.
Toward this end, the Seward Line cruises on the Gulf of Alaska shelf determine the physical and chemical oceanographic structure, the primary production and the distribution and abundance of zooplankton. We then xamine the seasonal and inter-annual variations in these measurements. At present, cruises are conducted each spring (May) and late summer (early September).
Spring 2011 status
- Spring melt/run-off: LOW (Slightly delayed)
- Water temperatures: COOL (Slightlty)
- Spring phytoplankton bloom: Just BEGINNING (DELAYED)
- Spring zooplankton growth: SLOW
- Spring zooplankton number: Slightly BELOW AVERAGE
Summer 2011 status
- Water temperatures: AVERAGE
- Phytoplankton: AVERAGE
- Zooplankton abundance: Above NORMAL
- Southern Zooplankton Species: Salps remain common