Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Oceanic Dead Zone

An oceanic "dead zone" has been discovered off the coast of Oregon. Scientists say the lack of Oxygen in the area can kill any creature caught in the area that cannot swim/scuttle away fast enough!

There are hundreds of these dead zones worldwide, mostly caused by pollution, but this one (which exists between the states of Oregon and Washington) was caused by winds and currents which disrupted the ecosystem. You can take a tour of the area through the video on this page from the Smithsonian website. It is about halfway down, on the right.

Many things can cause dead zones and many will disappear and recur over the span of several years. Most are small areas, but some span miles.

© C Harris Lynn, 2008

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