The Gulf of Maine: Maine’s Main Gulf

Cape Cod flexes its arm defiantly at a large cloud system threatening to invade from the east. And who could blame it - when this image was taken on August 10, 2017 its white sandy beaches were crowded with vitamin D-deprived vacationers in desperate need of a little undisturbed insolation. 

Cape Cod marks the southern extent of the Gulf of Maine, with the southeastern tip of Nova Scotia marking its northern boundary. The water in the Gulf of Maine is somewhat cooler than the water carried from south to north by the Gulf Stream, which passes just to the east. Interaction between Gulf Stream and Gulf of Maine waters produces tidal mixing. All of this makes it a great place to raise a family if you happen to be a haddock or an American lobster.

One might expect there to be a lot of cod in the waters around Cape Cod; and until a few decades ago, there was. Heavy overfishing and steady warming of the Gulf of Maine mean the temperature-sensitive American Cod is now listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

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