Gulf of Mexico Deep Sea Habitats 2003
September 21 - October 2, 2003
An interdisciplinary scientific team spent 12 days exploring deep-sea coral habitats in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. The occurrence of deep water corals in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) has been documented for some time, and the evidence indicates that they may be widely distributed in this fragile region that is heavily utilized by the oil and gas industry.
Some topographic features in the GOM have been identified as crucial spawning sites for commercially important fishes and reef-building deep-water corals, yet little is known about the abundance, extent, and diversity of these coral systems or their inhabitants. Due to the extensive human activity in the GOM, there is an urgent need to gain an understanding of these fragile and potentially valuable resources so that appropriate management strategies can be developed.
There was great potential for discovery during this exciting expedition, so follow this enthusiastic group of scientists during their journey to explore the deep-water habitats of the Gulf of Mexico!
Updates & Logs
Click images or links below for detailed mission logs.