The Eyes on the Ocean™ Bi-weekly is an informal way of keeping you up-to-date on U.S. IOOS® activities.

Email us to get it delivered to your inbox, and connect with us to keep up with the latest news!

From the Director:

Hello IOOS Community,

Happy Halloween! No tricks here, and as a treat today, read about some “spooky” marine organisms - the Vampire Squid and the Vampire Fish in this National Ocean Service story. 

This week I’m coming to you from the MTS OCEANS 2019 Conference. I’ve had some great conversations and heard some great talks on partnerships and the development of marine technology. I also had the opportunity to speak on a panel with other U.S. agencies that contribute to the Group for Earth Observations (GEO) where we briefed each of our federal strategic visions for ocean observations with industry representatives. NOAA and IOOS were also represented in the exhibit hall of the conference and did a great job messaging products and services available to support the marine industry and decision makers. I also gave a talk on IOOS and Harmful Algal Bloom work from the national perspective in the exhibit booth that was well received.

Today’s newsletter has some great items - including highlights from the IOOS Code Sprint, info on Rutgers RUCOOL Lab’s 500th glider deployment, and a new logo from one of our IOOS regions. (Spoiler: Great job NERACOOS!) Read on for more!

Best Wishes,

From the U.S. IOOS Office:

  • IOOS Advisory Committee Meeting: The IOOS Advisory Committee will meet in Washington, DC, February 11 & 12, 2020. More information will be made available on the IOOS Website soon. An announcement will be published in the Federal Register Notice as well.
  • Save the date! 2020 IOOS Spring Meeting: March 4 - 5, 2020: The IOOS Association, IOOS Regional Associations, and the IOOS Program Office will meet for their annual spring meeting March 4-5 in Washington, D.C. Check back for more information. Questions? Contact Katie Liming,

Observation Subsystem and Sensor Technologies:

  • Surface Current Mapping: (IOOS PO POC, Derrick Snowden,  

    • High Frequency Radar National Frequency Plan: A contract has been awarded to Freedom Technologies Inc.(FTI) to develop a national frequency plan for oceanographic radar in the 5-50 MHz ban in accordance with ITU resolution 612.  The contractor will support the government’s transition of the current fleet of oceanographic radars onto the new frequency channels, including spectrum management and administration for certification and assignment.


    • RUCOOL Celebrates 500th Glider Deployment: RUCOOL deployed the RU30 glider the week of October 14th in support of work by Dr. Grace Saba to study ocean pH in the New York Bight. On board the R/V Rutgers for this deployment out of the Sandy Hook area was the Ocean Methods and Data Analysis undergraduate class. Data from this glider and others can be viewed on our Glider Deployment Pages. RU30 was the 500th glider deployment that Rutgers has supported over the last 18 years. Congrats to Grace, the glider piloting team of Nicole Waite and Dave Aragon, Captain Chip Haldeman and the team on board the R/V Rutgers. We are already looking forward to the 1000th deployment!

    • Fall 2019 Mid-Atlantic Bight Glider Fleet Update: Rutgers University, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and Stony Brook University deployed 6 gliders to monitor the Mid-Atlantic Bight’s fall transition from highly stratified to well-mixed ocean conditions.  Deployments began in late September and continued through Mid-October. One glider is a shallow near-shore glider deployed to monitor water oxygen concentrations and the other 5 gliders are swimming cross-shelf lines from 15 – 200 meters.  Funding from this group of gliders was provided by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), the Mid Atlantic Regional Association Coastal Ocean Observing System (MARACOOS), National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Office of Atmospheric Research (OAR), the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (NYDEC).  The specific goals of the deployments vary from improving weather and ocean forecasting, monitoring near-shore oxygen concentrations and ocean pH as well as additional physical, biological and chemical conditions in the Mid-Atlantic Bight. Data from these gliders is being fed, in near real-time, to the IOOS Glider Data Assembly Center to help improve the models used to forecast hurricane tracks and intensities. Track the glider fleet’s progress here.

    • Gliding Towards the End of Hurricane Season: Forget hurricane season… for GCOOS, it’s been hurricane glider season as they track gliders operating in the Gulf of Mexico and along the southeast Atlantic Coast from a number of groups — including the U.S. Navy, University of South Florida, University of Southern Mississippi, Texas A&M’s Geochemical and Environmental Research Group and the University of Georgia’s Skidaway Institute of Oceanography — on our map-based tracker and piloting portal, GANDALF. Glider data helps forecasters gain better insights into ocean temperatures and other parameters critical for modeling weather events like tropical storms and hurricanes. GANDALF is a unique one-stop-shop where you can see data from all the gliders operating in the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean Sea and Western Atlantic Ocean. GANDALF recently hit a record of tracking seven vehicles at once. In addition to Slocum gliders, GANDALF has also provided data visualization and tracking for Kongsberg Seagliders, Liquid Robotics Wavegliders and Navocean's sailing vessel. GANDALF is rapidly becoming a “must-have” tool for researchers using autonomous vehicles. Read more about GANDALF here:

    • ATN Pacific Islands Data Workshop - Sept 30 - Oct 4: The ATN Data Team (Megan McKinzie-ATN, Ian Gill-Axiom, Chris Turner-Axiom) hosted a Pacific Islands data workshop at NOAA’s Inouye Regional Center, Honolulu, HI Sep 30 — Oct 4. Twenty participants from NMFS, PacIOOS, NAVFAC Pacific and UH were provided with a one-day introduction to the ATN and the DAC, including our data management tools (i.e., Research Workspace, Project Registration App and the Data Portal) as well as an introduction to metadata, ATN’s metadata standards and the RW metadata editor. This was followed by three days of one-on-one data sessions with PIFSC PIs to train researchers on the ATN data curation process from project registration and data submission to dataset archiving and DOI (Digital Object Identifiers) minting. These data sessions were also used to help define individualized data management plans for participating satellite telemetry PIs from the PIFSC Cetacean, Hawaiian Monk Seal, Marine Turtle and Shark Fisheries Research and Monitoring Programs. Thereby, helping these federally-funded researchers to fulfill their PARR requirements.

    • ATN Working Closely with Tag Manufacturing Community: Megan McKinzie was invited by Melinda Holland, the CEO of Wildlife Computers, Inc. to spend several days at the Wildlife Computer (WC) facility in Redmond, WA on Oct 14-15. During her visit she met with their Chief Engineering Officer, Danny Vo, and several of their research biologists to usher in improvements to the WC/ATN DAC machine to machine data transfer pipeline that is  used to auto ingest near real-time satellite telemetry trajectories and dive profile data into the DAC. Danny and Megan also discussed ways to increase ATNs access to manufacturer specific tag metadata and improve data/metadata standardization protocols. In addition, Megan gave a lunch-time ATN presentation to ~40 members of the WC staff highlighting the ever-growing collaboration between WC and ATN as well as providing a brief introduction to our DAC.

Data Management and Communications (DMAC) Subsystem and Tools Built on IOOS data (DMAC listserv – contact Micah Wengren, DMAC System Architect,

  • IOOS Code Sprint:

    The IOOS Program Office, in collaboration with the Great Lakes Observing System (GLOS), hosted the inaugural IOOS Code Sprint October 8 - 10 in Ann Arbor, MI (for more information and materials, see:  The Code Sprint brought together over 45 software developers, data managers, and technical professionals from the IOOS Data Management and Communications (DMAC), the Canadian IOOS (CIOOS), Ocean Observatories, and other communities, to collaboratively advance capabilities to publish physical, chemical, and biological ocean and lake observations.  Most of the work centered on improving open source software libraries hosted on IOOS’ GitHub organization ( Specifically, work was done to standardize the software used for QARTOD implementation, query and plot timeseries datasets hosted on ERDDAP servers on a mobile-friendly app, format and display biological datasets in Darwin Core schema, and leverage emerging commercial cloud technologies like ‘functions-as-a-service’ for data publishing needs.  The Sprint combined parallel breakout sprint workgroup time with short lightning talk sessions and a few tutorials on technical topics of interest, including Python code packaging best practices, Docker, and the Python-based Pangeo platform for big data geoscience. The Code Sprint was hosted at a coworking venue in downtown Ann Arbor that provided flexible space for teaming and full-group presentations.

  • QARTOD (National Coordinator Mark Bushnell,
    • ONC Workshop - 19-20 November: Ocean Networks Canada will host a workshop November 19-20, titled Developing Standards for Annotating and Storing Marine Passive Acoustic Data, Ancillary Data, and Metadata. Included in the discussion will be the potential implementation of QC tests described in the QARTOD Manual for Real-Time Quality Control of Passive Acoustics Data: A Guide to Quality Control and Quality Assurance for Passive Acoustics Observations. The goal is to produce recommendations for standards which can be published and presented to the International Organization for Standardization. The workshop also provides an opportunity for feedback on this QARTOD manual which could be used when the document is next updated.
    • Ocean Best Practice System Forum Created to Support Moorings and More: One outcome of a 2018 coastal ecosystem moorings workshop was the recommendation that a forum be established for ecosystems moorings operators and technical staff, to help “share lessons learned, exchange information, and build towards standardization” ( At the same time, the OBPS working group was seeking better ways to develop best practices, hoping to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas. That forum has now been created using MyBB – a beta site at for exploring development and an operational site at stands ready for implementation. This OBPS forum is envisioned to support a broad spectrum of topics, and the mooring subtopic is just the first of many if the forum is successful. Several volunteers have agreed to serve as administrators of the mooring subtopic forum, and have started to post content so that new registrants have content to view when joining. You are invited to join and share your mooring thoughts, or work with your colleagues to create a subtopic that meets your best practice needs. The OBPS and this forum are fit-for-purpose tools designed to assist the oceanographic community, yours to use to benefit your programs and projects.

Modeling and Analysis Subsystem (IOOS PO and IOOS Coastal and Ocean Modeling Testbed  (COMT) POC – Derrick Snowden,   

  • COMT Annual Meeting: The COMT Annual Meeting was held last week, October 22-23rd, in Silver Spring, MD. We will have a more detailed summary of the meeting and outcomes in the next edition of Eyes on the Ocean. Stay tuned!

Interagency and International Collaboration/News:

  • Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) (IOOS PO POC Gabrielle Canonico,


    • MBON Seascapes Now Available on CoastWatch:  US IOOS and MBON partnered with NOAA’s Oceanic and Atmospheric Research Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML), and NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS) to develop and routinely generate MBON Seascapes products and make them available on NOAA CoastWatch ( Derived from dynamic fields of satellite and modelled data, Seascapes are classified and used as a biogeographical framework to describe dynamic, changing ocean habitats for MBON and other applications. Seascapes provide information about the quality and extent of different oceanographic habitats or features and can be used to assess and predict the different planktonic and fisheries communities that reside within seascapes. Current Seascapes products include monthly and 8-day time steps with a spatial resolution of 1/20th of degree (~ 5 km). High resolution (1 km) case studies are planned on a case by case basis as through cooperation with US and global MBON partners.

    • Ocean Obs 19 Conference - Progress on Ecosystem Health and Biodiversity: US IOOS, NASA, and the Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) supported planning and implementation of a breakout session on Ecosystem Health and Biodiversity, which was attended by 125-150 participants.  The planning team included agency scientists and academic researchers with expertise in remote sensing, marine biodiversity, ecosystem services, animal telemetry and related areas. Three recommendations from the Ecosystem Health and Biodiversity discussions were reported out in plenary during the conference:  1) Integrate biological observations into the global observing system as an integral and necessary component of ocean ecosystem science and understanding, 2) Implement available technologies for biological observing now, maximizing access to biological data and information to quantify, explain, and forecast biodiversity changes, and 3) Advance decadal plans for a fully encompassing global ocean observing system that integrates biology, biodiversity, physical and biogeochemical observations.  Additionally, the OceanOb19 conference statement includes text on the importance of biology and biodiversity. The group will reconvene in the coming weeks to begin drafting a ten year implementation plan for Ecosystem Health and Biodiversity observing, as committed during the conference.
    • Biological Data Progress at the IOOS Code Sprint: The IOOS Program Office, in collaboration with the Great Lakes Observing System (GLOS), hosted the inaugural IOOS Code Sprint October 8-10 in Ann Arbor, MI. This year’s Code Sprint featured two days of discussion around issues related to biological data management and products. The Biological Data breakout group generally consisted of members who brought ‘raw’ datasets and worked towards populating these datasets into OBIS using the Darwin Core metadata standard and GBIF’s Integrated Portal Toolkit (IPT). OBIS-USA and GBIF node manager Abby Benson (USGS) reviewed the Darwin Core standard and the flexibility of characterizing surveys or animal tracks using a combination of Occurrence, Event and MeasurementOrFacts table. 
      • Additional discussion focused around the complementary nature of various portal endpoints for: 
        • 1) complete dataset archive (ie DataOne); 
        • 2) direct data transformation and access (ie ERDDAP); and 
        • 3) biogeographic discovery and analysis for given taxa across datasets (ie OBIS for marine or GBIF for marine and terrestrial). 
      • The Ecological Metadata Language (EML) standard can be consumed and shared across all three endpoints minimizing effort to describe data and maximizing discovery and utility for mentioned purposes., which includes an XML schema for Taxon borrowing elements from Darwin Core, was also mentioned for its ability to enhance discovery of datasets through Google’s Dataset Search, especially if paired with metadata description in CKAN a la the IOOS Catalog.
      • During the Code Sprint, Canada-IOOS (CIOOS) and the Ocean Tracking Network were especially active with developing a new stream of datasets to align with Darwin Core. A repository ( was fed with various scripts to transform data for feeding into the IPT, extract from OBIS and map (statically and interactively). This IOOS community is ideal for building out the necessary technical ‘glue’ to minimize effort of researchers to document and publish datasets for answering pressing questions about the status and distribution of marine biodiversity, particularly in a rapidly changing world (eg re-occurrence of the marine heat wave in the US Pacific). Members will reconvene sometime within the next month to share code and experience.
  • NOPP Biodiversity Interagency Working Group: The NOPP Biodiversity Interagency Working Group, co-chaired by NOAA, NASA and BOEM, resumed its quarterly meeting schedule on October 24, 2019.  Participants from NOAA, BOEM, NASA, Smithsonian and the NOPP office attended the meeting, hosted by OSTP at the White House Conference Center. Topics of discussion included: announcement of the new NOPP Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) projects and updates and opportunities related to the Smithsonian-led MarineGEO program, deep sea biodiversity research and monitoring, ‘omics and eDNA.  The group will continue meeting quarterly to share information about biological and biodiversity research and monitoring efforts that support agency mission and information needs and to discover opportunities for collaborative investments, cruises, workshops/meetings, and funding opportunities on topics of mutual interest from coastal areas to the deep ocean. New federal partners are always welcome. (POC: Gabrielle Canonico,

  • UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development: Following the First Global Planning Meeting held last May in Denmark, the Ocean Frontier Institute will convene a North Atlantic Regional Workshop 7-10 January, 2020, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. The workshop will facilitate regional, interdisciplinary discussions across sectors, such as ocean science and technology, ocean policy and sustainable development, industry, NGOs and civil society, and donors and foundations, to identify concrete deliverables and partnerships to meet the Decade's six societal objectives. More information is available on the workshop website ( including information on submitting an Expression of Interest (due November 15, 2019). The Steering Committee will select diverse subject matter representation for optimal participation. The North Atlantic Regional Workshop will aim to identify:

    • Knowledge gaps and regional ocean science priorities for the 2030 Agenda and the North Atlantic Action Plan

    • Existing relevant partnerships/networks/initiatives and potential interested partners

    • Priorities in capacity-development/training

    • Priority themes and topics to be addressed by the Decade

    • Other regional initiatives and meetings to be aligned with the Decade

  • NOAA Awards $3 Million for Biogeochemical Argo Research: We are excited to announce four new projects that will advance the biogeochemistry mission of the global Argo Program and boost NOAA's ability to measure, track and forecast ocean acidification, warming and other important ocean health indicators. Two of the selected projects will partner with ocean observation technology companies Sea Bird Scientific and MRV to refine biogeochemical (BGC) Argo float designs and test new sensors through the release of about 20 floats in the Tropical Pacific, an important region for understanding the ocean's role in the global carbon cycle. Two additional projects will support selected NOAA Research Laboratories and Cooperative Institutes in developing and deploying BGC Argo floats and using the resulting information to describe ocean chemistry changes in the California Current Large Marine Ecosystem and northwest Atlantic ocean - both significant areas for fisheries. Read more about these research projects and the Argo Program on NOAA Research.

  • U.S. Animal Telemetry Network Highlighted in National Ocean Service Story: Read more about the ATN, animal telemetry, and the ATN Data Assembly Center in this story from the Nationall Ocean Service Animal telemetry is a powerful scientific tool that helps us better understand marine life. Animal telemetry, the science of gathering information on the movement and behavior of marine organisms using animal-borne sensors, or tags, is a rising star in the field of ocean observing. And over time, continuous, long-term observations illustrate not only animal movements but also help us see the signs and understand the effects of changes to the ecosystems they inhabit.  The Integrated Ocean Observing System's Animal Telemetry Network Data Assembly Center is an access point to search, discover, and access animal telemetry data and associated oceanographic datasets from a wide variety of species and platforms.

  • CO-OPS Monitors Multiple October Coastal Inundation Events: Over the past two weeks, NOAA’s Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services’ (CO-OPS) Storm QuickLook Team monitored elevated water levels across a large swath of the Gulf and East Coasts caused at least in part by two tropical systems. Beginning around October 8th, water levels across the mid-Atlantic and New England coast began to rise due to a strong nor’easter situated off the coast that would eventually intensify into Subtropical Storm Melissa on October 11th and then Tropical Storm Melissa the following day. The storm coincided with higher than normal astronomical tides due to a full moon and caused minor to moderate coastal flooding from the mid-Atlantic to New England, including throughout the Chesapeake Bay. Peak water levels from Chesapeake Bay Entrance to New York Harbor reached between 2 and 3 feet above Mean Higher High Water (MHHW, average daily highest tide). Water levels at Bishops Head, MD on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay peaked at 2.62 feet above MHHW, which would be a new record if verified at this station, eclipsing the previous record water level set by the March 2018 Nor’easter. Following the coastal inundation caused by Melissa, a new tropical wave was beginning to form in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico off the Mexico coast. Even before the National Hurricane Center (NHC) initiated advisories for this system, water levels across much of the Gulf Coast were elevated by 0.5 to 1.5 feet above normal tide levels. NHC began advisories for Potential Tropical Cyclone Sixteen on Thursday October 17th with the system expected to intensify and gain tropical characteristics shortly thereafter. Midday on October 18th, the storm intensified into Tropical Storm Nestor and it moved quickly northeastward, making landfall near Apalachicola, FL midday on Saturday October 19th. The peak water level observed during this storm was 3.33 feet above MHHW at Apalachicola, FL, which would be tied for 8th highest on record if verified. Many other stations from southern Texas to Key West, FL measured peak water levels of over 2 feet above MHHW.

  • WHOTS Mooring Successfully Recovered and Redeployed: On Friday, October 4, 2019, NOAA ship Sette departed Honolulu, Hawaii for the annual recovery and redeployment of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) Hawaii Ocean Timeseries (HOT) Site (WHOTS) deep-water mooring (water depth ~5000 meters). The WHOI group, University of Hawaii group, Sette officers and Sette deck crew all worked together and successfully completed the WHOTS-16 deployment and recovery, for the first time on the Sette ship. Reporting back on October 11th, the team confirmed that the Sette ship is capable of doing future WHOTS mooring work. The WHOTS mooring was first deployed in 2004, is located about 100 km north of Oahu, and measures air and sea surface temperatures, relative humidity, barometric pressure, wind speed and direction, incoming shortwave and longwave radiation, change in pCO2 (to calculate CO2 flux) and precipitation. Subsurface instruments include vector measuring current meters (VMCM), conductivity, pressure and temperature recorders (Microcats) and acoustic doppler current profilers (ADCP).

  • Congratulations to the DOC Gold Medal Recipients: NOAA’s National Geodetic Survey (NGS) employees Jason Woolard, Jon Sellars, Srinivas Reddy, CDR Christopher Kerns, Maryellen Sault, Gretchen Imahori, LTJG Christopher Licitra, and Michael Aslaksen were recognized for improving technical and administrative processes that expedited processing, exploitation, and dissemination of emergency response imagery for Hurricanes Florence and Michael in 2018. Leveraging a combination of technical expertise, cloud based processing, innovative contract and administrative oversight, and dedication to customer service, the group delivered internet-accessible, high resolution imagery to the public, federal, state, and local responders within six hours after the aircraft landed. I had the pleasure of attending the awards ceremony on Thursday on behalf of NOS leadership and appreciated the opportunity to see the NGS team receive this prestigious award. Congratulations to all!

  • NGS Releases New, More Accurate 2019 Models as the Basis for Heights in North America: NGS has released its annual experimental geoid models xGEOID19. The geoid is an equipotential surface of the Earth’s gravity field, closely related to global mean sea level, which is the foundation for measuring precise heights. The new models contain airborne gravity from the Gravity for the Redefinition of the American Vertical Datum (GRAV-D) project along with data from the latest satellite gravity models and other sources. The xGEOIDs provide preliminary but increasingly-accurate views of the height changes expected from scheduled 2022 release of a new vertical reference system for the United States. New this year, NGS is also releasing models that have time-dependent components and reflect changes to the geoid over space and time. Monitoring changes over time are needed to ensure mapping products always have accurate information. For more information visit: For more information, contact, 240-533-9561

  • RDML Shep Smith Chairs International Hydrography Council in Monaco: RDML Shepard Smith, Director of the Office of Coast Survey, currently performing the duties and functions of the Acting Deputy Assistant Administrator for the National Ocean Service, chaired a 35 member state meeting of the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) Council. The Council is the oversight management body of the IHO charged with progressing the work of 91 members states toward charting the world's ocean and protecting the marine environment. The Council deliberated on proposals to recommend adoption of several key issues to the IHO's governing body, the Assembly. Topics addressed included a proposed roadmap to realize the promise of a new digital standard for managing chart and other data based on the "S-100 hydrographic data model," and the delivery of a new suite of integrated Electronic Navigational Chart (ENC) services over the upcoming decade. The Council also reviewed a proposed strategic plan for the IHO slated to be presented to the full membership of the IHO at its Assembly meeting in April, 2020, among other issues. Contact:

  • CO-OPS Diver Training Ensures Safety in the Field: CO-OPS conducted a “Dive Week” for its field team in Seattle, Washington. This week long annual event is required refresher training for divers, consisting of various drills and training needed to maintain dive certification. The NOAA Diving Program provided training on dive physiology, rescue techniques, decompression tables, regulations and policies, and accident management. Training on first aid and CPR, a “watermanship” test (500 meter timed swim), and several in-water dive skills also took place. CO-OPS operates more than 400 water level and meteorological stations along the U.S. coastline. Maintaining and updating these sensors requires a variety of technical skill sets, such as geodetic surveying, scuba diving, marine construction, and electronics and instrumentation troubleshooting and repair. This training gives divers the opportunity to start the new fiscal year with their review and training requirements completed. Contact:


  • Grants & Funding Opportunities 

    • U.S. IOOS Ocean Technology Transition Funding Opportunity: The U.S. IOOS Program, in conjunction with NOPP, is seeking to fund projects, subject to the availability of funds, which advance new or existing technology-based solutions that address long standing and emerging coastal observing, product development, and data management challenges. The projects will be focused on those technologies for which there are demonstrated operators who commit to integrated, long term use of those technologies and open data sharing. A Transition Manager for the project should be identified and a Transition Plan will be a Year One deliverable. Closes 1/13/2020. View the full notice here
    • DARPA BAA: This new BAA invites proposers to submit innovative basic or applied research concepts in the following technical domains: Frontiers in Math, Computation & Design; Limits of Sensing & Sensors; Complex Social Systems; Anticipating Surprise. The research topics of interest within each domain are described in the BAA. Closes June 12, 2020.

Delivering the Benefits:

  • New Red Tide Forecast Available for Sanibel Island: Sanibel Island residents and visitors who are susceptible to the respiratory impacts of Florida’s red tide — especially people with asthma and other chronic lung diseases — now have a new tool that will help them assess what day and time to visit three local beaches during red tides. The Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System (GCOOS) website ( now provides a risk-level forecast for red tide respiratory impacts on Bowman’s, Lighthouse and Tarpon beaches. The 24-hour Red Tide Respiratory Forecasts are updated every three hours, following the collection and analysis of water samples. The forecast will typically be available on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Read more here:
  • GCOOS Working on Real-Time Nitrate Reports: GCOOS, NOAA and the University of Louisiana have started a new pilot project that will generate nitrate data in coastal and estuarine ecosystems around the northern Gulf more frequently than is currently provided. The pilot follows on the interagency Nutrient Sensor Challenge and more recent Nutrient Sensor Action Challenge, which have helped facilitate and accelerate development and use of continuous nutrient sensors in research and management. The new Gulf pilot project will continue to assess the operational status of new nutrient sensors by integrating these tools into existing monitoring programs. GCOOS will incorporate data into the products provided to the broader community. Read more here: 
  • New SCCOOS & CeNCOOS Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring page: Check out the new and improved Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring Alert Program page that reviews SCCOOS and CeNCOOS weekly monitoring effort at nine university-run or municipal pier stations along California’s coast for a suite of HAB species and for the neurotoxin domoic acid (DA) caused by the Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) producing diatom Pseudo-nitzschia. The new page also includes an interactive plotting tool for the recorded observations at each site. 
  • Cooling off in the NANOOS Region: The warm temperature anomalies in the Northeast Pacific are disappearing, with NANOOS Tillamook, Columbia Bar, and Cape Elizabeth buoys reading near normal. The 2019 marine heat wave may be dissipating due to wind and storm action that is increasing vertical mixing. However, Puget Sound buoy anomalies are still warmer than average, reflecting this water body's retentive nature due to reflux that occurs at its sills. These observations illustrate how climate variation differentially may affect marine habitats.
  • How We Respond: The AAAS Series on Climate Change: The AAAS has developed a series about climate change called How We Respond: Communities and Scientists Taking Action on Climate Change. This project includes a report and multimedia stories that highlight the ways U.S. communities are actively and effectively responding to climate change at the local, state and regional levels, and the critical role of science and scientists in their response. A recent story "A Crippled Oregon Shellfish Hatchery Spawns Better Ocean Monitoring Systems" looked at problems with Oregon's shellfish hatcheries caused by ocean acidification and how the community worked with science to develop better ocean observing systems.


  • ICOOS Act Update: No update.


  • New GCOOS Podcast: GCOOS is working with Texas A&M University College Station and KAMU-FM on a podcast series called “On the Ocean.” These two-minute segments are designed to educate the community about ocean observing and ocean issues. Episodes began airing in September; so far they have covered the history of the Integrated Ocean Observing System in the U.S., as well as how GCOOS began. They have also talked about why we measure the parameters we do and some of the tools we use to monitor our oceans. Coming up: Examples of the products GCOOS creates. The project is supported by GCOOS and the TAMU Department of Oceanography. Have ideas for ocean observing system-related topics? Email
  • SECOORA and GCOOS at the St. Petersberg, FL Science Festival: GCOOS and SECOORA teamed up to teach students the International Code of Signals at St. Pete Science Festival on October 18th. See photos from the festival on the SECOORA Twitter page and GCOOS Twitter page.  
  • Great Lakes Observing System launches the Smart Great Lakes Initiative: On October 22nd, the Great Lakes Observing System (GLOS) announced the launch of the Smart Great Lakes Initiative as part of their strategic plan for 2020-2025. The Smart Great Lakes Initiative exists to modernize an information ecosystem based on Great Lakes environmental data in order to improve understanding, use, and management of the lakes. This information ecosystem will connect the binational Great Lakes watershed, the largest freshwater system in the world, with advanced data management and analysis, leveraging technology innovations that get people the information they need, when they need it. Read more here: 
  • NERACOOS Launches a New Logo! Celebrating 10 years of NERACOOS means honoring past successes and also planning for the future, which lead them to ask, “does our outward presentation reflect what it is we do?” The answer, they decided, was that when it came to looks, there was room for improvement. NERACOOS hopes this new logo more clearly communicates their purpose and marks the beginning of another successful chapter. Check out the latest edition of the NERACOOS Observer for more info. 
  • Tell your NERACOOS story: This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the NERACOOS observing system. To celebrate the past, present, and future of ocean observing in the Northeast, we would like to hear how these data and information impacted people's lives, research and decisions. Read more here.
  • IOOS in the News:

Click here to view the IOOS Association Calendar

Do you have suggestions for new things you would like to see in the Eyes on the Ocean IOOS Bi-Weekly? Talk to us:!