Follow us on Instagram @pribsbluesmuse, but here is our daily log if you want the full experience!
As you might guess, field season is pretty busy. Here is an abbreviated Blog as I haven’t had time to concentrate on this. I’ll come back later and fill in the details for everyone! Cheers for now!
September 13, Thursday and September 14, Friday – Clean up days and fair well to SNP this season. Thanks to everyone! Until next year!.. Actually, Jenny and I will be back in a week for Bering Sea Days! We are the ‘Crab Team’ with ADFG Kodiak Biologist Julia Dissen.
September 1, Saturday to September 12, Wednesday – This was the busiest time of the summer. All experiments were started at East Landing and Trident. Chris was a great help, we couldn’t have done it without him! He left the island on September 9. The number of experimental tethering plots available was 14. So, at any one time, 14 crabs with video cameras were deployed and being actively monitored. However, over the course of 2.5 weeks we had 32 tethered crabs exposed and documented. Over this period, three scientists averaged 3-4 dives per day, checking crabs, deploying/retrieving cameras, downloading video, and going out to collect our remaining settlement bag moorings. The tethering experiments were very successful overall, while about half of our moorings were lost to weather and the extreme seas this season.
August 29, Wednesday to August 31, Friday – Huge Bering Sea Storm passes! It called for 22ft seas, and 40kt winds out the northwest. This storm, as we suspect later, moves many of our moorings from the original locations. Some by more than 100 yrds!
August 28, Tuesday – Our experiments being off of East Landing! First eight crabs are deployed.
August 19, Sunday through August 27, Monday – Chris Long finally arrived to the island to help Jenny and I for about 2.5 weeks. We started pulling mooring blocks with any weather/seas opportunity and processing those samples for live RKC and BKC. Finished setting up our experimental site at East Landing and conducted several dives in the Harbor scoping out potential experimental sites in a less exposed site. We finally decided under the Trident Dock was the only good location, as the rest of the harbor is sand/mud substrate or otherwise jetty boulders covered in matted, filamentous algae. It became apparent that the darkness under the dock limited algal settlement. This allows for a diverse community of juvenile fishes and invertebrates on the rocks. As we started to collect juvenile crabs for experiments, we maintained husbandry and feedings every other day off the small boat harbor docks and inside the Trident Processing Plant live tanks.