Welcome to Salp Watch 2014. Lots of salp sightings this fall near the coast. Here's one we pulled up in a bucket during a GNATS cruise across the Gulf of Maine in September.
It looks like Thalia democratica. The bloom was so dense you could see it off the bow for miles and miles.
In October, a group from the New England Aquarium reported huge salp blooms in the Bay of Fundy:
And around the same time I got this email:
"Yesterday out lobstering there was an incredible abundance of what I think were salps in the water near the surface. They were ladder like creatures about 4-6 inches long. In some areas there were dozens in a square meter (rough estimate). This picture doesn't do it justice but if you look at the lower right hand corner you can see a couple of them. The VHF chatter was all about how guys were having to clean their raw water intakes because they were getting clogged with jellies."
We have a salp model up and running at Bigelow now, and I hope to set this in forecasting mode for the bloom next fall (which is when our Maine salps bloom).
Nick Record, signing off