The Ups and Downs of Weather

Day 11: Saturday, July 30

We felt we paid for yesterday’s beautiful weather and tons of sightings as today was a day of extreme weather. We started at 6am at about 40.7N 66.3W on line number 7 in poor sighting conditions, 20 knots of wind, so the visual marine mammal observers could not work, but the passive acoustic array was able to be deployed. Mother nature then wiped up some rain squalls and 30 knots of wind. That was fun to watch! But it all settled down quickly and the visual marine mammal observers were able to start working at about 1:30pm, and in the afternoon we saw the usual animals and birds. The passive acoustics, however, were able to work all morning and afternoon, a very positive aspect of the passive acoustics data collection methods!

Day 12: Sunday, July 31

Our last full day. Today we were able to complete the last four lines of the inshore lines that were just south of Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard. The conditions were beautiful. We did not see lots of marine mammals, but we did see many sharks (mostly blue sharks), birds, and fishing boats. This was the first day that we saw harbor porpoises. We also saw mostly common dolphins.  We finished our lines by about 5:15pm, just in time for us to dismantle our equipment and get to dinner.  At this evening’s sunset viewing we got all of the scientists together and took pictures of the entire gang.

Day 13: Monday, August 1

We arrived at the dock in Newport, RI at 0700, unloaded all our stuff, and then scattered to the winds, but not before thanking the crew of the Henry B. Bigelow who were fun, professional and a real pleasure to work with.

Debi Palka
Chief Scientist, Leg 3
Aboard the Henry B. Bigelow
AMAPPS 2011

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