|Title||Slope currents around the Kerguelen Islands from demersal longline fishing records|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2008|
|Authors||Park, YH, Gasco, N, Duhamel, G|
|Journal||Geophysical Research Letters|
The Kerguelen Plateau constitutes a natural obstacle for the eastward progress of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, especially around the Kerguelen Islands. However, there is little quantitative knowledge of the current field around the islands due to lack of long-term current measurements. We performed a systematic analysis of a total of 28917 points of fishing gear drifts from setting and recovery positions of demersal longlines deployed between 2002 and 2007 for Patagonian Toothfish ( Dissostichus eleginoides) fisheries in Kerguelen waters. This enabled the construction of a realistic field of depth-averaged time-mean slope currents along the 1000 m isobath all around the Kerguelen Islands. The strongest depth-mean velocities of 25 cm s(-1) are associated with the Polar Front, which rounds the islands from the south and flows northward along the inner continental slope immediately east of the islands, strongly supporting previous hydrographic evidence. These results demonstrate the potential for hitherto unexploited historic longline drift data from demersal fishing grounds to provide valuable quantitative information on the regional circulation.