Sea surface temperature

Understanding sea surface temperature and how it varies across the globe over time is incredibly important. The oceans cover 71 percent of the earth's surface. Ocean temperatures have a huge influence on global weather patterns, and play a major role in shaping the structure and function of marine ecosystems. Ocean temperatures influence what species of plants, animals and microbes can live in a given location, and affect important animal behaviours such as migration and breeding. When ocean temperatures rise too far above or below typical levels, key marine life such as corals and seaweeds can be damaged or die. Changes in ocean temperature can also alter the local and regional circulation of ocean waters, which can affect the primary and secondary productivity of entire reef and ocean ecosystems.

Click on the following links to see:

The map above shows how much the ocean has warmed over the recent past for each of the Australian Marine Parks.

How to use the map

Click this button (third from top on the left hand side of the map) to see the map metadata.