Net primary productivity, upwelling and coastal currents in the Gulf of Ulloa, Baja California, Mexico
1Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada (CICESE), Unidad La Paz, Miraflores No. 334, Fracc. Bella Vista, La Paz BCS, 23050, Mexico
2CICESE, Unidad La Paz Physical Oceanography Department, Mexico
3CICESE, Biological Oceanography Department. Ensenada, BC, Mexico
4Center for Ocean and Atmospheric Prediction Studies. Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306, USA
5Centro Interdisciplinario de Ciencias Marinas (CICIMAR-IPN), Oceanology Department La Paz, BCS, Mexico
Abstract. The Gulf of Ulloa, a highly productive area off the western coast of Baja California Peninsula, is examined for five successive years (2003–2007) by using satellite data and seasonal net primary productivity estimates obtained by a vertical generalized production model. The results clearly identify a seasonal signal of coastal upwelling in productivity estimates. Highest values occur from May to June and sometimes July. We also find influence of an equatorward coastal current able of transporting water from neighboring north upwelling areas to the Gulf of Ulloa in winter–spring. This flow contributes to increase the seasonal net primary productivity. The opposite occurs in summer, when a warm poleward current of tropical characteristics arrives to the region. Our findings reveal that such warm coastal current suppressed the productivity in the whole.