Harmful Algal Bloom Operational Forecast System (HAB-OFS)
Advance warning of harmful algal blooms (HABs) (commonly called "red tide") increases the options for managing impacts resulting from these events. NOAA's Harmful Algal Bloom Operational Forecast System (HAB-OFS) provides information on the location, extent, and the potential for development or movement of harmful algal blooms in the Gulf of Mexico.
The forecast system relies on satellite imagery, field observations, models, public health reports and buoy data to provide the large spatial scale and high frequency of observations required to assess and predict bloom conditions, location and movements. HAB conditions reports, including potential impacts for the next 3-4 days, are posted to this Web page twice a week after confirmation of a HAB, and once weekly during the inactive HAB season. Additional bloom analysis is included in the HAB Bulletin that is provided to state and local coastal resource managers in the region. How do I get the NOAA HAB Bulletin?
The Harmful Algal Bloom Operational Forecast System is an ongoing project that depends on the dedication, energy, and feedback of individuals from partner agencies and numerous other organizations working on this issue in the Gulf of Mexico.
The HAB Bulletin alerts subscribers to developing blooms and changes in the location and extent of existing blooms.
Operational HAB Bulletins are sent twice a week via e-mail to registered users with natural resource management responsibilities. A week after the HAB bulletin has been issued, it is posted to the Harmful Algal Bloom Bulletin Archive for public access. NOAA demonstration bulletins are pre-operational and may not be issued on a routine schedule. (Please visit the Developmental HAB Forecast Project web page for more information about developmental HAB projects.) If you have management responsibility and would like to be added to the mailing list, contact NOAA Harmful Algal Bloom Operational Forecast System.
The HAB Bulletin Guide document is provided for the registered users to understand and interpret the HAB Bulletin. It is in the PDF format and available for downloading.
(Photo Credit NOAA, WHOI, FWC FWRI, Charlotte (FL) Sun Herald)