The Capes Current: a summer countercurrent flowing past Cape Leeuwin and Cape Naturaliste, Western Australia

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    Abstract

    Although the dominant boundary current off Western Australia is the poleward-flowing Leeuwin Current, satellite imagery shows that there is a cool equatorward coastal countercurrent running close inshore in the extreme southwest during the summer months. This seasonal current has been named the Gapes Current as it appears to be strongest between Cape Leeuwin (34 degrees 20'S) and Cape Naturaliste (33 degrees 30'S), and it is probably linked with the general northward shelf current which has been observed previously along most of the Western Australian coastline further north. Strong northwards wind stresses between November and March slow the Leeuwin Current (which moves offshore) and drive the Gapes Current, and there may be localised upwelling as well (Gersbach et al., Continental Shelf Research, 1998). It has important implications for the salmon fishery as it may affect the migration of adult salmon around Cape Leeuwin at this time of year. (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)401-420
    JournalContinental Shelf Research
    Volume19
    Issue numberN/A
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1999

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