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Bright Green Phytoplankton in Bay of Arguin, Mauritania

20.2N 16.6W

November 21st, 2011 Category: Phytoplankton

Mauritania - November 20th, 2011

The Bay of Arguin, or Banc d’Arguin, is a bay on the Atlantic shore of Mauritania. It is south of Cap Blanc, north of Cap Timiris, and contains the islands of Arguin and Tidra. The bay contains the Banc d’Arguin National Park.

The Bay of Arguin is an area of over 10,000 km2 of shallow water and tidal flats between the Sahara and the upwelling system off the Mauritanian coast. Hydrographically, the bay can be characterized as a large-scale negative estuary with higher salinities near the shore, whose ecosystem is fueled by nutrients and organic matter derived from the upwelling area. Phytoplankton feeding on these nutrients and organic matter give the bay its bright green color.

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