The Gulf Stream forms water rings,
or eddies, that can influence the productivity of fishing
areas. Eddies are sections of moving water that swirl
off from the main Gulf Stream current and loop back
on themselves, forming something like whirlpools. These
eddies consist of water that is of different temperature
than the water that surrounds them. On the surface,
eddies are usually about 100300 km in diameter.
However, they are not just surface features. They are
cylinders of water that can reach to depths of almost
4000 m. The SST image below shows three well-developed
eddies, revealed by the difference in sea surface temperatures.
! Examine the SST image to identify the eddies. Move your cursor over the image to show a diagram of water temperature and motion. Click the red dots to see animations showing how warm and cold eddies form.