September 2014

September 2014 Newsletter

Read SECOORA's September 2014 Newsletter. Feature stories include: Partners Host Intern, 2013 Annual Report, Marine Weather Portal, and more!

SECOORA, IOOS, and Partners Training the Next Generation of Ocean Experts


This summer SECOORA partners hosted Pedro Matos-Llavona from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez for a summer internship as part of the NOAA Educational Partnership Program (EPP) and the Integrated Ocean Observing System (U.S. IOOS). The collaborative effort between SECOORA partners Dave Easter (U.S. IOOS), Felix Jose (Florida Gulf Coast University- FGCU) and Jay Law (University of South Florida College of Marine Science- USF CMS) provided Pedro the chance to practice as an oceanographer, gaining hands-on experience and knowledge in the field.

"I believe this internship opportunity helped Pedro to learn advanced methods in oceanographic data analysis, which would help him to pursue a career in coastal ocean monitoring”- Felix Jose, FGCU.

During his internship Pedro spent half his time analyzing data under the mentorship of Felix Jose at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU). Pedro learned about time series data analysis. Using Harmonic Analysis, Pedro analyzed ADCP data from a USF COMPS Buoy off Fort Myers Beach for the duration June-July 2013. He filtered the data for tidal and non-tidal components and compared it with wind data collected from the same station. Pedro was trained in using matlab software for processing and plotting oceanographic data. The matlab program that he developed during his time at FGCU could help him to expand his research horizon; especially in the field of coastal circulation and monitoring. 


Image Credit: Pedro Matos-Llavona, NOAA EPP Intern
For Pedro’s second part of the internship, he planned a research cruise on the R/V Bellows. He assisted in the process of recovering and analyzing ocean data under the mentorship of Jay Law, USF real-time Coastal Ocean Monitoring and Prediction (USF COMPS) System Research Associate. USF COMPS was established by The Ocean Circulation Group (OCG) to provide real time information for the West Florida Shelf. USF OCG, headed by Professor Robert Weisberg, engages in physical oceanographic studies of the ocean circulation and the interactions between the oceans and atmosphere.
The goal of the cruise was to (1) release and recover a 2,400lb bottom mount equipped with an Acoustic Doppler Current profiler; and (2) replace sensors on one USF COMPS buoy. 
     Image Credit: Ben Meister, USF
 Image Credit: Abbey Wakely, SECOORA
Pedro acted as Chief Scientist on the cruise, directing control operations during the retrieval/release of bottom mounts and replacing sensors on a buoy. Pedro had the opportunity to gain scientific training dives by servicing the bottom mounts.
Image Credit: USF CMS


Watch the video to hear Pedro talk about his internship!

SECOORA Partners Trace Flow of Currents from Rivers to Reefs

Image Credit: GRNMS
Gray’s Reef National Marine Sancutary staff joined researchers from Georgia Southern University to release 50 gallons of fluorescent red dye into the Altamaha River outflow on September 9, 2014. The plume of dye that results, will be monitored visually and with instrumentation as it flows from the release point along the Georgia coast and offshore. Tracking the path of the dye will provide estimates of the extent to which the Altamaha River delivers dissolved substances, including contaminants and nutrients, along the Georgia coast and to hard-bottom reefs, such as Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary, occurring up to 20 miles offshore.
In addition to releasing the dye, 2 satellite-enabled drifters will be deployed to collect information on how larger materials, such as dead stalks of marsh grass, may disperse after being transported by ocean currents from the Altamaha River estuary.
Local teachers were engaged in building the drifters and data obtained from the drifter paths will be made available to the public and to local school teachers for use in the classroom. As with the buoys, these drifters will be clearly labeled so please do not remove them if spotted offshore. Alternatively, please contact the investigators if a drifter is found to have come ashore.
Drifters trajectory path will be coming soon on the SECOORA website! Check back for updates.
For more information about this study, please contact:
Jody Patterson at 912-598-2431
Administrative Assistant
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
Amy Rath at 912-598-2397
Communications and Outreach Coordinator
Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary
Dr. Daniel Gleason at 912-478-5957 or Dr. Risa Cohen 
Department of Biology 
Georgia Southern University 

Re-posted from Grays Reef National Marine Sancutary - click here for orginal post