While everyone is busy at sea with fishing operations, acoustic monitoring and data entry and analysis, there is some downtime. People use their free time in various ways. The RV Celtic Explorer has a small gym that sees plenty of use, except in very rough seas. There are two lounges, both with Sky boxes and dvd players. The Love/Hate and Game of Thrones are proving very popular this trip. However, on this trip, some people have got more creative with their free time. The ladies on board have a daily yoga class in the rope store. So far none of the crew have taken this up, but there’s still a few days to go . . . .
One of the scientists has also shown a new creative side. Biologist Macadara Ó Cuaig has taken up wood carving. Each day he produces a new marine creature he has carved and sanded in the wetlab. Who knew some pallet offcuts and a piece of wooden flooring could be turned into such imaginative shapes? His display in the dry lab is growing daily.
Blogpost by Graham Johnston
The End is Near
The end is near and we’re on our way back to Galway having completed and exceeded our planned work program……and just in the nick of time judging by the approaching weather system. Our survey in numbers then: • Over 3,700nmi of survey transects • Total area coverage of over 6,000nmi² • 60 CTD stations • 21 Trawl stations • Over 6,000 fish measured • 10 hours of marine mammal observations daily (team n=1), 6 species identified including humpbacks and Fin whales • 10 hours of seabird observations daily (team n=2), with 23 marine and 6 terrestrial species identified. Even a few moths and butterflies and blue fin tuna thrown in for good measure • Over 300 seawater samples for microplastics Many thanks to the scientific crew for all their dedication and hard work over the last three weeks. A special note to the MMO and bird team for the long hours spent outside in the wind and rain. A big thanks also to the Captain (Anthony) and crew of the Explorer for facilitating us during the survey and for the good humour….even at 3am. The captain(s) and crew(s) of the Explorer have an international reputation for being highly professional while keeping an easy going attitude across of wide range of disciplines….even when the weather’s rubbish. Happy 10th survey anniversary !
Blogpost by Ciaran O’Donnell
Team pic below: From L-R: Ciaran O’Donnell (Chief Scientist), Dr. Cormac Nolan, Macdara O’Cuaig, Mareike Volkenandt, Dermot Fee, Graham Johnston, Helen McCormick, Gary Robinson, Turloch Smith, Amy Lusher, David Williams, Imelda Heir, Stephen McAvoy, Caoimhe Muldoon, Fankie Griffin.