"Pacific's California Current Likened to Africa's Serengeti Plain"

"Like the vast African plains, two huge expanses of the North Pacific Ocean are major corridors of life, attracting an array of marine predators in predictable seasonal patterns, according to final results from the Census of Marine Life Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) project published in the journal Nature.

The paper culminates the TOPP program's decade-long effort to track top marine predator movements in the Pacific Ocean. It presents for the first time the results for all 23 tagged species and reveals how migrations and habitat preferences overlap - a remarkable picture of critical marine life pathways and habitats.

The study found that major hot spots for large marine predators are the California Current, which flows south along the US west coast, and a trans-oceanic migration highway called the North Pacific Transition Zone, which connects the western and eastern Pacific on the boundary between cold sub-arctic water and warmer subtropical water - about halfway between Hawaii and Alaska."

SPX had the story June 23, 2011.

Thursday, June 23, 2011