Day 15 – July 11: Another beautiful day. We finished up line 47 and completed about half of line 26 (our two most southern and offshore lines). Our sightings were mostly of squid-eating species: Risso’s dolphin, sperm, pilot, and unid beaked whales. We also had some Atlantic spotted, bottlenose, and rough-toothed dolphins. A group of rough-toothed dolphins came to the bow and, though they weren’t there very long, Pete collected another sample! Pete’s been doing biopsies for a long time and that’s the first time he’s every darted a rough-tooth.
Day 16 – July 12: Windy, windy, windy. Everywhere. So, we stayed put where we were and got caught up on data, movie-watching and naps.
Day 17 – July 13: Completed line 26 in excellent conditions. More Atlantic spotted, striped, and Risso’s dolphins. Also some great looks at a large group of pilot whales. Timing worked out so that just as we finished surveying for the day, the engineers were able to take over and utilize our transit towards some inshore lines to take care of some of their routine maintenance needs.
Day 18 – July 14: Windy, windy, windy. Everywhere. Again. We had given it the ol’ college try, but were out of options, so decided to head back to the barn. After some initial scrambling to prepare for an early arrival, we were greeted at the dock by friendly faces and welcoming arms.
Thanks to all of the scientific and Bigelow crew for making this leg such a success!
Allison Henry, chief scientist