Northern Gulf Institute Studies Ocean Processes Impacting Fish Populations - Florida Climate Institute

Contact Person: Chassignet, Eric

Collaborators: F. Coleman, D. Dukhovskoy, S. Morey , A. Todd

Institutions: Florida State University

Funding Agency: Northern Gulf Institute

Status: Funded

Filed Under: Coastal Ecosystems

Abstract: A regional ocean model, together with analysis of in situ and remotely sensed data, is used to investigate the circulation on the northern West Florida Shelf that can impact transport pathways for reef fish larvae. Several species, with gag grouper being a key species, spawn in the winter and spring months near the shelf edge, with juveniles appearing several weeks to a couple of months later in the nearshore sea grass beds. The mechanisms by which the larvae transit the shelf can depend on wind-driven circulation patterns, that exhibit strong interannual variability, and interaction with larval behavior. This project aims to understand the transport mechanisms and how the variability can affect annual recruitment.