- Not Exactly Rocket Science
Solving the San Francisco plankton mystery
Look into the oceans past the sharks, seals and fish and you will find the tiny phytoplankton. These small organisms form the basis of life in the seas but if their populations get to big, they can also choke the life from it by forming large and suffocating algal blooms.
The waters of San Francisco Bay have never had big problems with these blooms and if anything, scientists worried that the waters didn’t have enough phytoplankton. All that changed in 1999, when the phytoplankton population started growing. It has doubled in size since.
Now, scientists from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) have found that the blooms are the result of a long chain of ecological changes in