Thermal infrared satellite data of June 6 and 8 (Figure 1) reveal that a new large warm-core anticyclonic eddy has recently separated from the Loop Current within the Gulf of Mexico. On June 8, the eddy's dimensions were 546×300 km, with a center at 26° 20.9′ N latitude, 88° 05.8′W longitude. The eddy was justifiably named “Eddy Whopper.”
The distance between the eddy and the Loop Current increased by about 70 km during the 56 hours that elapsed between the images shown. Separation of the eddy was preceded by southwestward advection of cool Florida shelf water observed between May 31 and June 6 (Figure la).