Coral Ecosystem Connectivity 2014: Mission Logs

 

August 14 Log: Heading Out

August 14 Log: Heading Out

Memories of yesterday’s Miami traffic and dinner in Coconut Grove are vanishing in the wake of the University of Miami Research Vessel F.G. Walton Smith as it plies Hawk Channel just off the Florida Keys.

Upon arrival at Pulley Ridge late yesterday afternoon, the first order of business was to deploy the moorings for the light traps.

August 16 Log: Let the Mission Begin!

Upon arrival at Pulley Ridge late yesterday afternoon, the first order of business was to deploy the moorings for the light traps. 

August 17 Log: Meet the ROV Team

August 17 Log: Meet the ROV Team

My name is Lance Horn and I am half of the team that constitutes the Undersea Vehicles Program at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. The other half of the remotely operated vehicle (ROV) team is Jason White.

August 18 Log: Red Grouper on the Edge

August 18 Log: Red Grouper on the Edge

Architecturally complex habitats arise from physical forces – wind, currents, and geological events or from the activities of resident organisms – beavers, prairie dogs, and...Red Groupers? Indeed!

August 19 Log: You Say You Want a Revolution in Fish Surveys?

August 19 Log: You Say You Want a Revolution in Fish Surveys?

‘The Revolution’ consists of a housing enclosing a battery-driven gear motor that rotates a mounted Go-Pro video camera about a fixed point at 1.5 revolutions per minute.

August 21 Log: The Flora and Fauna of Pulley Ridge – the Deepest Mesophotic Reef off the Continental U.S.

August 21 Log: The Flora and Fauna of Pulley Ridge – the Deepest Mesophotic Reef off the Continental U.S.

Today, Pulley Ridge is the deepest mesophotic reef off the continental U.S. waters and one of the most species-rich and diverse.

August 22 Log: Discovery of Significant Coral Populations at Pulley Ridge

August 22 Log: Discovery of Significant Coral Populations at Pulley Ridge

We saw more coral here (primarily Madracis, some Oculina) than we had seen on any of our previous dives this year.

August 23 Log: The In-situ Ichthyoplankton Imaging System (ISIIS)

August 23 Log: The In-situ Ichthyoplankton Imaging System (ISIIS)

ISIIS captures the shadows of fragile and semi-transparent plankton and fish larvae while being towed behind the R/V Walton Smith at speeds up to five knots.

August 24 Log: New Eyes for Science

August 24 Log: New Eyes for Science

Over the past few years, a revolution has taken place in the digital imaging arena with the introduction of new cameras and platforms at super-low prices making them accessible to a widening consumer base.

August 25 Log: The Mohawk ROV’s 100th Dive and the Discovery of the Halophila Seagrass Beds

August 25 Log: The Mohawk ROV’s 100th Dive and the Discovery of the Halophila Seagrass Beds

We humans like to take notice of events that end in two zeros. Today we had such an event. It was the 100th dive of the Mohawk remotely operated vehicle (ROV).

Mission Summary

Mission Summary

We had a very successful 2014 field season. Our team of 20 scientists and divers working on two ships, the R/V F.G. Walton Smith and the M/V Spree, were able to accomplish all our planned objectives.

 

 

Check out mission logs from last year's expedition:

 

 

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