NOAA Teacher at Sea
Onboard NOAA Ship Gordon Gunter
June 5–24, 2013
Mission: Ecosystem Monitoring Survey
Geographical area of cruise: The continental shelf from north of Cape Hatteras, NC, including Georges Bank and the Gulf of Maine, to the Nova Scotia Shelf
Personal Log: Well I’m back in my home state of Arizona. It is really hot, the forecast is for it to be above 110º, and I miss the cool breezes of the Atlantic Ocean. I am happy to be back in Arizona, but I will miss all the people, the marine creatures and the beauty of the Atlantic Ocean. I will remember this experience for the rest of my life and look forward to sharing this exciting adventure with my students, friends and family.
On the last two days onboard we finished up our EcoMon Survey and had time to add 23 more Bongo Stations. These were completed in two areas with the first just east of Maryland and the second off the coast of North Carolina. As we headed east of North Carolina we went into the Gulf Stream and the water temperature started to increase. At these stations our samples contained more larval fish than previously. We even brought up some deep-sea fish in two of these samples. One was a species of Gonostoma and the second a Hatchet fish. Both were fairly small and black with iridescent colors and had large mouths with many teeth.
Our drifter buoy, WMO # 44932, has been showing some movement since being deployed (to track movement, put GTS buoy for data set and WMO # for platform ID). Currently it is at latitude/ longitude: 38.73ºN, 73.61ºW. It does appear to be moving inland, but hopefully it will catch the current and start moving further into the Atlantic. We will be tracking it at Howard Gray over the next year.
Last day on the Gordon Gunter, Margaret, the chief steward, prepared a special meal for all of us. The spread included: Alaskan crab legs, roast duck with plum sauce, NY loin strip Oscar, grilled salmon, asparagus, red potatoes, Italian rolls, cream of potato and bacon soup (which I had at lunch, delicious) and cranberry cheesecake. I choose the crab, duck, asparagus, potatoes, and cheesecake – heavenly!!! I probably shouldn’t have had the cheesecake as well, but it was just delicious! Margaret always had so many great choices it was really hard to make up your mind.
Our last night on the Gordon Gunter was amazing. We had another unbelievable sunset with fantastic colors. A friend of mine from Arizona said, “It makes our Arizona sunsets look very bland and I think they are some of the best I’ve seen.” Then a group of Bottlenose dolphins visited the bow of the ship, so it was truly a remarkable night I will always remember.
Question of the day? : Why do you think the deep-sea fish have such large mouths?