Journey into Midnight: Light and Life Below the Twilight Zone

Happy World Oceans Day!

By Megan McCall, STEAM Coordinator - Bayside Academy
June 8, 2019

Science Crew Muster Drill

Science crew muster drill. Image courtesy of Journey into Midnight: Light and Life Below the Twilight Zone. Download larger version (jpg, 5.8 MB).

What better way to celebrate World Oceans Day than doing some real science investigations in the Gulf of Mexico! Fortunately, the storms going through the southeastern United States moved through the area and we were able to disembark at the scheduled time of 7 pm yesterday (June 7). Our safety debriefing and muster drill got us started by Captain Nick Allen and all 15 science crew and 8 Point Sur crew got on our way. The Chief Scientist, Sonke Johnsen, Ph.D., led our science meeting after and we prepared to launch the remotely operated vehicle in the morning and the trawl net after. Unfortunately, after motoring all night, seas were not cooperating at 5-7 feet to be able to launch and the decision was made to continue to the next sample site.

Top left and lower right: Dragonfishes; Top right and lower left: Bearded Netdevils (Linophryne ssp.); Middle right: Deep sea hatchetfish; Middle bottom:

Top left and lower right: Dragonfishes; Top right and lower left: Bearded Netdevils (Linophryne ssp.); Middle right: Deep-sea hatchetfish; Middle bottom: "Tubeshoulders" (Platytroctidae); Middle left: Flashlight fishes; Middle of page: Lanternfish (Diaphus effulgens) face-on shot. Image ©2019 DEEPEND/Danté Fenolio. Download larger version (jpg, 159 KB).

In the interim of having some sampling information, above is a conglomerate of photos (“celebration of bioluminescent structures in deep water fishes”) from our science team member, Danté Fenolio, who will be capturing photos of our specimens along the way. These are just some of the animals that we hope to catch along the way.

Over the next couple of weeks, different science and boat crew members will be sharing their insights and experiences through our mission logs, so follow along and see what we discover!