Russian-U.S. Arctic Census 2012 Expedition: Mission Logs

September 17 log
September 17 Log: A Few More Photos
Bodil Bluhm and Katrin Iken from the University of Alaska Fairbanks share a few additional photos collected over the course of the second leg of the 2012 RUSALCA mission. Enjoy!

September 15 log
September 15 Log: One Last Day...
We are on our last full day at sea, all the stations have been sampled and samples sorted and we are ending our voyage with the long transect home along the Russian coast and through Bering Strait.

September 14 log
September 14 Log: Marine Mammal Visual Survey
The main goal of this Russian-American Long-term Census of the Arctic (RUSALCA) cruise was to document marine mammals along the Chukotka coast of Russia. Unlike the U.S. Chukchi that is surveyed by plane and boat annually, there are no systematic surveys of the Russian coast.

September 13 log
September 13 Log: Benthic Infaunal Population Structure and Carbon Cycling in the Chukchi Sea during RUSALCA 2012
The objectives of our benthic program are to evaluate macroinfaunal abundance and biomass of animals living within the sediments and their relationship to environmental variables within the Russian-American Long-term Census of the Arctic (RUSALCA) study area.

September 11 log
September 11 Log: What Else Could a PhD Student Need?
Once again, the RUSALCA cruise seems more at home to me than anywhere else. Same cozy ship, same skilled crew and intelligent team, same intriguing science, same delicious desserts. What else could a PhD student dreaming of running away from institute and her thesis for a bit to have a rest possibly need?

September 9 log
September 9 Log: Sampling for Zooplankton
During the Russian-American Long-term Census of the Arctic 2012 cruise, our four-person team (Ershova, Hopcroft, Kosobokova, Rutzen) is studying the distribution of the small animals that drift within the water called zooplankton.

September 7 log
September 7 Log: New Ocean, New Fish Species
This is the first time I’m in Pacific waters. Normally I work with fishes in Atlantic waters near Svalbard or Greenland, but several species I see here are very similar, or the same species, as we have back home.

September 6 log
September 6 Log: Finally, A Break in the Weather
After days of high waves, wind, and fog, we awoke this morning in the lee of Wrangel Island. For the first time in what feels like a very long time (but is only four or so days), the sun was shining and we could see Wrangel 12 miles away.

Mission Summary
September 3 Log: Science Standstill
We are at a science standstill right now, hostage to two low-pressure systems, one currently in the southwest Bering Sea and the other over Norton Sound.

Mission Summary
September 2 Log: Searching for Seafloor Life
in Stormy Seas

Anyone from kitchen staff to cleaning personnel, winch operator to our fellow scientists, including even the geologists and ‘clean water’ colleagues come to take curious peaks when we empty out the trawl net and spread out the treasures from the seafloor in sorting dishes on deck.

September 1 Log
September 1 Log: RUSALCA Mooring Recovery Rodeo
Just prior to the current leg of the Russian-American Long-term Census of the Arctic (RUSALCA) expedition, a small team of intrepid explorers headed over to the Russian side of Bering Strait to try to recover three oceanographic moorings that had been there for two years. Aleksey Ostrovskiy was on the cruise and describes the experience.

For 2009 coverage of the Russian-U.S. Arctic Census expeditions, visit:

Or visit the Russian-American Long-term Census of the Arctic (RUSALCA) website to learn more about and view photos from the project, starting in 2004.



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