‘Headed Out?’ New sign reminds boaters where to access information on Mobile Bay conditions

There’s now a sign at the mouth of Mobile Bay to remind boaters of the valuable resource mymobilebay.com. The sign is located along the waterway that leads from the busiest launch in coastal Alabama, Billy Goat Hole on Dauphin Island.

The mymobilebay.com website pro vides boaters with real-time weather and water information, including air temperature, water temperature, wind speed and direction, salinity, and dissolved oxygen. The information is updated every half hour and is gathered from seven water quality sampling stations that are located around Mobile Bay.

Scientists at Dauphin Island Sea Lab maintain mymobilebay.com and the data are part of the Alabama Real-Time Coastal Observing System (ARCOS).

The new sign was installed in time to take advantage of red snapper season, which represents a major uptick in boat traffic. In 2017, scientists conducted a survey to assess the number of fishermen leaving out of Mobile County across 10 days in May and June. Only one sampling day was within federal snapper season and there were more fisherman on that day than the other nine days combined.

The mymobilebay.com sign is also visible to anyone riding the ferry, traveling on a charter vessel, or living in the northeastern part of the island with a private access point.

This project was funded by the NOAA RESTORE Science Program, which aims to increase our understanding of the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem and provide resource managers with the best available science.