Swathes of oxygen-deprived water up to 100 miles long, unable to sustain any form of animal life, have been found in the Atlantic, scientists have said.
Researchers of the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel in Germany discovered the unexpectedly low oxygen environments several hundred kilometres off the coast of West Africa.
A paper, published in Biogeosciences, describes 100-mile-long eddies of swirling water spinning their way across the Atlantic for months at a time.
The group of researchers led by Dr Johannes Karstensen have suggested that: ‘the eddies propagate westward, at about four to five kilometres day, from their generation region off the West African coast into the open ocean.’
Dead zones are usually found in shallow bodies of water, such as lakes and shallow coastlines.
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