With an impressive winter storm forecast to move up the East Coast--including blizzard and winter storm warnings for the southern part of the Chesapeake Bay--over the next 36 hours or so, the CBIBS team is working to make sure delicate parts of the buoys stay safe.
Much of the Chesapeake region is facing close to a week of air temperatures below 32 degrees. Those sustained cold air temperatures are causing water temperatures to tumble, too. While the freezing point of fresh water is 32 degrees, the point at which water in the Chesapeake Bay will freeze can vary due to salinity levels.
Each winter, to keep the most vulnerable buoys safe from potential ice damage, the CBIBS team works with partners to pull the Susquehanna, Patapsco, Annapolis, and Upper Potomac buoys. Sensors can be damaged by ice, and ice floes can move buoys significant distances.
As waters in the northern part of the Chesapeake Bay drop to near freezing temperatures, the CBIBS field team--working with their partners at the U.S. Coast Guard and University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science--makes sure buoys stay save over the winter. For the four northernost buoys, this means they are pulled from the water to protect their sensors and hulls.
The CBIBS field and technical team, in collaboration with partners from NOAA Sanctuaries and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, has deployed a CBIBS buoy at York Spit, at the mouth of the York River.