Tagging Whales in the Antarctic Seas

Return to Palmer Station
by -- January 6th, 2010

The Gould Returns to Palmer Station from fishing to pick up the whale team for the next leg…

A small subset of the whale team (Dave, Elleta, Roland and Pat) went out with the “ice-fish” project for the last four days. We pulled some fish pots on the way out of Palmer and then made a run up to Dallman Bay to trawl. The first night was rockin with a big swell coming in from the Drake and some wind. The first days of trawls were not getting as many fish as hoped for but things picked up after that. It was great to see the fishing operation and get a better understanding of the work they are doing. On a few hauls I helped carry ice fish to the “aquarium room” and shoveled the bottom catch back out. The big activity for the whale team on-board this leg was crunching the data from the last whale observing and tagging leg. So I Duck-taped my latop to the countertop and worked through the swell. So we got a huge amount of GIS and statistical work done on this journey and some nice breaks on the back-deck to see what the trawl brings up from the Antarctic bottm. We are pulling up to Palmer Station as I write this and getting ready to do a quick trun-around. We hope to off-load the fish and fishing team and head straight back out. We are trying to run ahead of some nasty weather. The weather report yesterday stated the our region would be “pummelled” by a significant low pressure system coming in from the Pacific (Yes they actually used the word “pummelled”…). So I guess I’ll keep the laptop duck-taped down for a while longer.

Got to run we have much work to do.

 

Pat

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