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Bloom in Bay of Biscay, off Coast of France

May 11th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Bloom in Bay of Biscay - May 10th, 2009

Bloom in Bay of Biscay - May 10th, 2009

Bloom in Bay of Biscay - April 25th, 2009

Bloom in Bay of Biscay - April 25th, 2009

In the main image, a phytoplankton bloom creates a teardrop-shaped turquoise area in the waters of the Bay of Biscay. In the full image, the coast of Spain is visible below.

In the second image, taken about two weeks earlier, the bloom had a circular shape and was much less intense.

When this image is fully opened, concentrations of phytoplankton can be seen forming in three distinct areas of the bay. The coast of France is visible to the Northeast, and that of Spain to the South.

Phytoplankton are microscopic marine plants that drift on or near the surface of the sea, using green-colored chlorophyll to convert sunlight into energy.

When enough of these microscopic plants group together, their green chlorophyll causes the water in that area to appear green or light blue.

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