Water temperature is an important factor affecting aquatic organisms. Organisms use water temperature as a cue to tell them when to migrate from the open Gulf to the estuaries to lay their eggs. It also affects the metabolic rates of animals, with higher temperatures increasing metabolic rates. In addition, temperature affects diseases such as bacteria and viruses, which are more prevalent in warmer waters. Bacterial contamination is the reason oysters are not safe for consumption during the warmer months of the year.
The normal temperature range in Galveston Bay is 68-86 degrees Fahrenheit.
Artist Boat students use a standard scientific thermometer (with safe red liquid instead of mercury) to measure temperature: