Thursday, October 18, 2012

Day 10

Micro ROV Diving
     aboard the R/V Falkor
Southern Stingray at Site MI-616

Today began with 4 ft seas and 20 knot winds making it difficult to launch some of the equipment so we began preparing for a micro ROV dive. The plan was to dive two of the ships at MI-616. This time the fisheries team used the bow of the boat to launch the micro ROV and weighted the tether to the seafloor (100 ft).  Each dive took about 45 minutes and we gathered great footage of the fish found at these sunken Liberty Ships. This micro ROV has been used at seven different artificial reef sites in the last year by the fisheries team and video will be analyzed to determine the fish abundance that inhabit these reefs and also a count of the total number of species seen. On the last dive we even came across a southern stingray. In the afternoon the fisheries team processed fish samples from the previous day as the CTD team collected samples around MU-A-16.  Dr. Wetz and crew are looking to see if these artificial structures impact ocean currents and how that influences the base of the food web.  

Megan and Stacey retrieve the ROV
Micro ROV
The team guides Megan

Dave and Judd tie the ROV cable to the ship
Dr. Ajemian and Megan operate the ROV and use a blanket to help shield the light

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