Researchers Ponder Missing Water Layer in Hood Canal

by Tim Flanagan on June 30, 2010

Video from the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission:

Christopher Dunagan has the story in the Kitsap Sun:

HOODSPORT — Oxygen levels in Hood Canal are dropping into the danger zone, for sale
as researchers observe a condition they have never seen before.

Hood Canal never bounced back from the low-oxygen levels of last winter, audiologist
and now a huge mass of oxygen-depleted water is building up at the bottom of the canal, according to oceanographer Jan Newton, who heads the Hood Canal Dissolved Oxygen Program.

Normally, by this time of year, a band of dense water containing greater amounts of dissolved oxygen has pushed in from the ocean and lies at the bottom of the waterway. But that band, which scientists call an intrusion, is missing this year, leaving the canal with a greater oxygen deficit than ever seen before, based on data going back to the 1950s.

It is too early to predict the likelihood of a major fish kill, such as the one that decimated thousands of fish in the fall of 2006, Newton said, but the lack of oxygen at depth leaves the canal with little breathing room going through summer and into fall.

Read more

Leave a Comment