North Carolina is well known for both its distinctive barrier islands (making Pamlico Sound the largest lagoon in the U.S.) and highly productive fisheries. Both of these features exist in large part because North Carolina sits that the point where two of the largest ocean currents in the Atlantic meet. From the north, the Labrador Current meanders from the Arctic Circle along the Canadian, New England, and Mid-Atlantic shorelines and crashes into the Gulf Stream at Cape Hatteras, deflecting this warm current off its own shore-hugging course from the south and out across the Atlantic Ocean. Aside from literally defining the shape of the Outer Banks, the collision zone represents the boundary between temperate waters to the north and subtropical waters to the south. This presence of this border means that, depending on the time of year and local weather conditions, you can catch just about any marine fish native to the Northwest Atlantic Ocean off of the Outer Banks.
At 0930, January 30, 2013, the research vessel Cape Hatteras made her final voyage through the Beaufort Inlet to dock at Pivers Island. The Cape Hatteras served as the flagship of the Duke/University of North Carolina Oceanographic Consortium for 31 years. During that time she logged more than 5000 days at sea over the course … Read More “Saying goodbye to an old friend: The R/V Cape Hatteras returns home from her final voyage” »