Saturday, 23 August 2014

The Bandar Khyran Bay

Bandar Khyran Bay

The Bandar Khyran Bay  is a unique feature of the capital area serving as a rich habitat for mangroves, corals, fish, bird nesting, and sea turtles.
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Green water off Oman

Green water off Oman in the Arabian Sea

This true-color Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) image from October  shows what is likely to be the impact of the southwest monsoon season on the biological productivity of the waters of the Arabian Sea.

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Chlorophyll concentration

Chlorophyll concentration

Chlorophyll  a concentration is an index of phytoplankton biomass and it is the most common property that characterizes marine productivity. Satellite remote-sensing images of ocean colour, calibrated as chlorophyll concentration provide a unique approach to monitor  the productivity of the oceans and seas worldwide. Read More...

Omani Coast

The coast of Oman
 
The Sultanate of Oman occupies the south-eastern corner of the Arabian Peninsula and has a total area of 312,500 km2.
It is bordered in the north-west by the United Arab Emirates, in the west by Saudi Arabia and in the south-west by Yemen. A detached area of Oman, separated from the rest of the country by the United Arab Emirates, lies at the tip of the Musandam Peninsula, on the southern shore of the Strait of Hormuz.
 
The Sea of Oman: Long-term Changes of the Ecosystem

     The prospective of the ongoing research is an advanced understanding of climate driven interactions between physical-chemical dynamics and plankton communities in the western Arabian Sea, with a special reference to the Sea of Oman (the easternmost part of the Arabian Gulf).

     Despite the numerous expeditions carried out predominantly in the open (oceanic) waters of the western Arabian Sea, the physical-biological interactions in the Sea of Oman have been much less investigated. Existing research implied the gradual differences this region has, in comparison to the physical-chemical dynamics and physical-biological coupling in the western Arabian Sea.

     In terms of physical-chemical dynamics, the Findlater Jet in the atmosphere, along with the Ras Al Had frontal zone in the water mass -both set up a boundary which makes the Sea of Oman dynamically isolated from the western Arabian Sea:

Long-term Changes of the Ecosystem

Figure: The system of currents and water mass transport along the Omani coast. Background image: three-dimensional bathymetric map (www.earth.google.com).  Two parallel lines (1) demarcate the location of the Ras Al Hadd frontal zone formed by the confluence of currents (3 and 4). Arrows (2-4) indicate direction of the main currents (in summer through fall period). (2): inflow of the Indian Ocean Water mass, (3): outflow of the (Arabian Gulf) Persian Gulf Water mass, and (4): Oman Coastal Current (East Arabian Current).

     This isolation has seasonal changes mediated by the reversal of monsoon winds. The frontal zone is less pronounced or decays entirely during the north-east (winter) monsoon season, when the northern part of the Gulf is occupied by a current penetrating the Gulf from the north-east. From the west, the hydrological regime of the sea is mediated by the high saline waters coming from shallow Arabian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz and propagating towards the open Arabian Sea, to the east and south-east.

     By using historical data, ongoing field sampling, remote sensing and modeling, we are aimed at understanding the seasonal and interannual changes taking place in pelagic communities of the Sea of Oman. As for the scale of small bays, a few studies have attempted to illustrate the taxonomic diversity of phytoplankton in Muscat area with no attempts to evaluate long-term changes of plankton communities. The Bandar Khayran Bay is a unique feature of the capital area serving as a rich habitat for mangroves, corals, fish, bird nesting, and sea turtles. Data from this region are used as well, to evaluate seasonal and interannual trends of variability.

Prof. Sergey Piontkovski
Principal Investigator
Sultan Qaboos University

 
Interannual changes of algal blooms and fish kills
An example of long-term changes taking place along the Omani coast is given in the figure.Read more
decadal profiles
The regional warming trend: vertical profiles of summer temperatures (June-August) in the western Arabian Sea averaged over decades along Omani coast. Read more

Sponsor

The Research Council

Overview

     The TRC Open Research Grant program aims at enhancing research capacity in the Sultanate of Oman by allocating small to mid-sized research grants for short and mid-term projects.
     This results from demand-driven research initiatives to support researchers, including higher education students, in conducting projects within their areas of interest.
     The program promotes investigator driven research and encourages research-led projects based on international standards.
     The program also aims to build the research capacity in the country by supporting higher education students with funded projects.

Latest News

Image BlueLeg Monitor measures harmful algae
Monday, 07 October 2013
BlueLeg Monitor measures harmful algae in Gulf of Oman with WISP hand held deviceDuring a visit to the Ministry of Fisheries of the Sultanate of... Read more...

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