Vander Woude, AJ, Largier, JL, Kudela, RM (2006). Nearshore retention of upwelled waters north and south of Point Reyes (northern California) - Patterns of surface temperature and chlorophyll observed in CoOP WEST. DEEP-SEA RESEARCH PART II-TOPICAL STUDIES IN OCEANOGRAPHY, 53(25-26), 2985-2998.
Retentive embayments can be found near capes in upwelling regions, where they stand out as relatively warm features with higher chlorophyll a concentrations than surrounding waters. Within the area of the Wind Events and Shelf Transport study site (WEST) from the Gulf of the Farallones to Point Arena (37.5-39 degrees N and 122.5-124 degrees W), we describe two retentive embayments, extending approximately 20 km north of Point Reyes, and 30 km south of Point Reyes in the northern Gulf of the Farallones. These areas are identifiable from chlorophyll a (SeaWiFS) and sea-surface temperature (MODIS) satellite radiometry. Additional data from moorings and drifters were used to further characterize these retentive features. The persistence of these features is on time scales between 2 and 10 days, determined from time-series analysis of mooring data for chlorophyll and temperature. The alongshore wind stress is negatively correlated with chlorophyll and temperature mooring values. The time scale of persistence of these retentive features was similar to both the upwelling-relaxation timescale and the timescale of phytoplankton bloom development. The WEST region is notable in that the spring and summer is subject to the strongest wind stress along the US west coast, yet the coastal waters are highly productive. Based on our observations, we suggest that the apparent persistence of high biomass coastal waters in this strongly advective and wind-dominated system may be partially explained by the presence of retentive features identified in this study. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.