Peggy Deichstetter, September 6, 2010

NOAA Teacher at Sea
Peggy Deichstetter
Aboard Oregon II
August 29 – September 10, 2012

Mission: Longline Shark and Red Snapper Survey
Geographical area of cruise: Gulf of Mexico
Date:  September 6, 2010

What an exciting beginning of my shift. First of all , the seas were rough, well rough for me anyway The line the other shift had set was ready to be brought in. You could feel the energy in the air. The day shift was still on deck with cameras ready. It took awhile for the ship to find the small blinking light in the rough seas. But they did eventually find it and the work began. First hook had a Sharp Nose, and it continued hit after hit. There was a total of 26 fish, most of them Sharp Nose but also a few Black Tip and Spinner sharks.
I must say I admire the scientists. Here we are in the middle of the night on rough seas and these guys are hanging over the side of the boat pulling in some large fish. The other scientists pulled the hooks out , measured, weighed, and tagged them, all on a rocking deck.
Removing the hook
Removing the hook

I’d like to thank the day shift for sticking around, they were invaluable in getting all of the fish processed in a timely manner.

Our next station is a plankton tow. Its two hours away. I started my blog and then started to proof read my published one because the internet was working. Sleepiness and/ or sickness came over me. The dry lab, where the computers are, is small and in the rear of the ship, which is really a great place to get seasick.
I went out and sat on deck and immediately fell asleep. I woke up as the rest of my team gathered on deck for the plankton tow. The seas are so rough that the decision was made only to do the bongos. Once again I have to admire these guys hanging over the edge to put in and take out the netting. Our next shark station is two hours away.
This free time gave me the opportunity to see that a hurricane, Hermine, is forming in the lower Gulf and predicted to move towards…………… Everyone needs a little excitement in their life. I think I will take out my panic attack and dust it off just in case I need it later.
The weather has gotten really bad. The rest of the stations for today were called off. The team leaders brought in or tied down everything on deck. I now understand the meaning of the phrase batten down the hatches.

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