Because of a simple e-mail sent back in June, I found myself standing on a dock in Pensacola early last Saturday morning, ready to embark on a 3 day research cruise with colleagues from FSU, Valdosta State, and UWF. Our mission? To collect water, sediment, and plankton samples from 27 sites off the coast of Pensacola.
Map courtesy of Sarah Tominack, UWF Graduate Student
As the only newbie on the cruise it took me a few stations to get in the groove but lead researcher Dr. Wade Jeffrey of UWF and graduate student Sarah Tominack took me under their wing and made sure that I had plenty to do!
The tools of my trade. One of my tasks was to take water samples from three different depths-surface, maximum chlorophyll, and bottom- and run them through a filter to determine chlorophyll levels.
The all-powerful CTD instrument (conductivity, temperature, depth) used to collect water samples as well as information about salinity and chlorophyll levels.
The most important tool on the ship- the winch; a grab sampler used to collect sediment from the sea floor; sediment samples taken at around 30m.
FSU undergrad Scott Byfield; Valdosta State's Dr. Jim Nienow rocking a Deep-C t-shirt; and everyone's favorite- the ice cream freezer!
What an awesome trip. Great food, great people, and great weather all in the name of science!
Ocean Science Educator