23 Jun 2011:
Marine Life Census Reveals
Major Ocean Corridors in North Pacific
A decade-long census of marine life in the North Pacific Ocean has documented how abundant seasonal food supplies attract an array of predators annually to two major oceanic corridors
, which researchers
Click to enlarge
Craig Hayslip/OSU Marine Mammal Institute
A blue whale encountered during a tagging expedition
liken to African savannas of the sea. In a study conducted by 75 biologists, oceanographers, engineers and computer scientists, researchers placed more than 4,300 electronic tags on 23 critical marine species to map migration routes and habitat preferences and identify major seasonal hot spots for predator species. Reporting in the journal, Nature
, researchers identified two major corridors: the California Current, which flows south along the U.S. west coast, and a trans-oceanic corridor called the North Pacific Transition Zone, which forms the border between cold sub-Arctic waters and warmer subtropical waters. Those two zones contain massive amounts of zooplankton and fish, which in turn attract larger predators. In the California Current, researchers found that large numbers of whales, sharks, seals, and tuna return annually to areas where they were first tagged and where food is most abundant.
Yale Environment 360 is
a publication of the
Yale School of Forestry
& Environmental Studies
Yale Environment 360
articles are now available in Spanish and Portuguese on Universia
, the online educational network. Visit the site.
Business & Innovation
Policy & Politics
Pollution & Health
Science & Technology
Antarctica and the Arctic
Central & South America
Tribal people and ranchers join together to stop a project that would haul coal across their Montana land. Watch the video.
is now available for mobile devices at e360.yale.edu/mobile
An aerial view of why Europe’s per capita carbon emissions are less than 50 percent of those in the U.S. View the photos.
Ugandan scientists monitor the impact of climate change on one of Africa’s most diverse forests and its extraordinary wildlife. Learn more.
video series looks at the staggering amount of food wasted in the U.S. – a problem with major human and environmental costs. Watch the video.
video goes onto the front lines with Colorado firefighters confronting deadly blazes fueled by a hotter, drier climate. Watch the video.
A three-part series Tainted Harvest
looks at the soil pollution crisis in China, the threat it poses to the food supply, and the complexity of any cleanup. Read the series.