Northwest Fisheries Science Center

Newportal Blog

A gateway to oceanographic adventures from the Newport Line and beyond

Blog on ocean conditions along the Newport Line and the northern CA Current.

The El Niño has arrived!

By Jennifer Fisher
April 1, 2016

You all may be thinking….what? The El Niño has been here for awhile now. The weather has been incredibly wet and we often hear about El Niño in the news. But, while the wet weather might be indicative of an El Niño pattern, we have not observed the expression of the El Niño in the ocean off Newport Oregon until our recent trip aboard the F/V Timmy Boy on March 26, 2016.

The water has been warm since the Fall of 2014 from the “Warm Blob” and we have observed many subtropical species of copepods. However, until now, these species have not been the coastal species that are transported to our area from the south that we normally see during El Niño events. But, now we are beginning to see some of these species such as Eucalanus and Rhincalanus- two copepod species that are common in the coastal waters of southern California. We also are starting to see “El Niño” type water (relatively warm and fresh) in the deep waters over the continental slope.  We should know for sure what is going on within the next few weeks. 

Stay tuned to find out what changes in the temperature, salinity, and zooplankton occur over the next few months.

Leaving the safe harbor of Newport Oregon. Matt Yergey is excited to finally be getting out to sample.
Rainbow before the rains.
Recovering a wayward buoy that had Japanese writing on it.

Tagged: NH Line, El Niño

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