Environment

Sea surface temperatures on the Northeast USA Unusually Warm

Sea surface temperatures in the Northeast Shelf Large Marine Ecosystem, which extends from Cape Hatteras to the Gulf of Maine and outward to the boundary of the continental shelf, increased dramatically to reach a record 57.2 degrees Fahrenheit, beating a previous record high in 1951. The average temperature over the past three decades has been typically lower than 54.3 degrees Fahrenheit.

The warmer ocean temperatures might be good news for beachgoers in the Northeast, but they could also disrupt ecosystems, along with the livelihoods that depend on them. Black sea bass, summer flounder, longfin squid, and butterfish have been migrating northeastward. Lobsters are migrating too, but at a slower rate.

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