The State of the California Current, 2004-2005: Still Cool?
Bograd, Steven J.
Schwing, Franklin B.
Peterson, William T.
Smith, Robert L.
Wheeler, Patricia A.
Hyrenbach, K. David
Sydeman, William J.
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This report summarizes the recent state of the California Current System (CCS), primarily during the period of April 2004 to January 2005. The report is based on observations made between Oregon and Baja California by various ocean observing programs. The CCS was not forced by any coherent basin-wide processes during the observation period. The weak tropical El Niño of 2004 did not appear to have had a noticeable effect on the CCS. However, the CCS remains in a cold phase, a state it has had since the 1999 La Niña phase. Some biological parameters show a distinct response to this state, i.e. zooplankton biomass and its species richness, others display a mixed response such as the CCS avifauna and its productivity, and some do not show any response, such as phytoplankton biomass and Pacific sardine (Sardinops sagax) productivity. Over all, the state of the system remains “normal” with respect to its climatology. The unusual intrusion of cold and fresh subarctic water into the CCS is waning off Oregon but still noticeable off southern California and off Baja California. Because the CCS does not appear subject to coherent basin-wide forcing, the outlook for the CCS over the next years is uncertain
State of the California Current, CalCOFI Rep., Vol. 46, 2005
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