Scientia Marina, Vol 80, No 3 (2016)

Three-dimensional connectivity during summer in the northern Gulf of California


https://doi.org/10.3989/scimar.04370.15A

Carolina Montaño-Cortés
Departamento de Oceanografía Física, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada (CICESE) , Mexico

Silvio G. Marinone
Departamento de Oceanografía Física, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada (CICESE) , Mexico

Abstract


Connectivity studies in the Gulf of California are an important tool for improving the use and management of the gulf’s natural resources. The goal of this work was to study the three-dimensional connectivity in the northern Gulf of California during two representative months of summer when most local marine species spawn. Passive particles were advected for eight weeks in a three-dimensional current field generated by a three-dimensional baroclinic numerical model. The results indicate that the locations of greatest particle retention were the Upper Gulf and the Seasonal Eddy. The Seasonal Eddy corresponded to the area of largest particle catchment because the continental coastal current carries most particles released in the Midriff Archipelago region; subsequently these particles were entrained in the seasonal cyclonic eddy, causing most of them to remain within it. We conclude that the continental coastal current and the Seasonal Eddy control the connectivity patterns in the northern Gulf of California.

Keywords


connectivity; northern Gulf of California; summer; HAMSOM; retention; continental coastal current; Seasonal Eddy

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