The U.S. GLOBEC Georges Bank Program is a large multi-disciplinary multi-year oceanographic effort. The proximate goal is to understand the population dynamics of key species on the Bank: cod, haddock, and two species of zooplankton - in terms of their coupling to the physical environment and in terms of their predators and prey. The ultimate goal is to be able to predict changes in the ... distribution and abundance of these species as a result of changes in their physical and biotic environment as well as to anticipate how their populations might respond to climate change.
The effort is substantial, requiring broad-scale surveys of the entire Bank. In addition, process studies focus both on the links between the target species and their physical environment and on the determination of fundamental aspects of these species' life history (birth rates, growth rates, death rates, etc.). Equally important are the modeling efforts that are ongoing which seek to provide realistic predictions of the flow field and which utilize the life history information to produce an integrated view of the dynamics of the populations.
Broad-scale surveys include CTD casts, zooplankton and larval fish surveys, and acoustic (volume back-scattering) surveys.
Process cruises investigate copepod fecundity, copepod feeding rate, copepod growth rate, larval fish feeding rate, zooplankton abundance, vertical zooplankton distribution, horizontal zooplankton distribution, stage frequency distribution, and zooplankton behavior.
Mooring cruises measure current velocity, temperature, salinity, and depth.
Modeling exercises investigate Gulf Stream meanders, and patch formation in turbulent flows.
In addition, the data collected at sea are analyzed along with satellite images such as AVHRR sea surface temperatures and Coastal Zone Color Scanner data.
[This information was condensed from the U.S. GLOBEC Georges Bank
Program World Wide Web pages http://globec.whoi.edu/ ]