Mission: Alaska Walleye Pollock Survey
Geographical Area: Shelikof Strait
Date: July 3, 2013
Location Data from the Bridge:
Latitude: 154.35.3 W
Longitude: 57.65.65 N
Ship speed: 12 kn
Weather Data from the Bridge:
Surface water temperature:
Wind speed: 13.01 kn
Wind direction: 271.17
Barometric pressure: 1,008.6 mb
Science and Technology Log:
Yesterday was the first day at sea for this 18 day research cruise. You should now be able to follow the Oscar Dyson online by visiting the NOAA ship tracking website: http://shiptracker.noaa.gov/shiptracker.html
Here are some questions I’m getting from my students.
From Kathy H.:
Why is the Pollock so popularly used for our fast food meals and imitation crab? I am thinking it must be plentiful, dense, and mild.
You are correct Kathy! One reason Pollock is used for fast food restaurant and imitation crab is that it is a mild fish. Another reason would be that when cooked it has the desired characteristics of being white, dense, and flakey. Also, the pollock is higher in oil counts which make this fish more flavorful than others.
From Lorie H.: Do you know if the Pollock are fished in other areas besides Alaska?
The Alaskan Pollock that the scientists are studying here on the Oscar Dyson are commonly found in the Bering Sea, Gulf of Alaska, and the Russian Sea of Okhotsk. Another type of pollock is the Atlantic pollock. These are not fished at the same level as the Alaskan pollock. While about 11 million pounds of the Atlantic pollock are fished each year around 1 million tons of Alaskan Pollock are fished in a year.
Since many of you asked to hear more about what it is like to live on the Oscar Dyson, the following will give you an idea of some of the amenities on board the Oscar Dyson.
The Oscar Dyson has 21 state rooms. I share this room with another scientist. Our stateroom consists of a porthole (window), a set of bunks (I have top bunk), desk, telephone, refrigerator, and a set of lockers. My roommate and I are on opposite watches. The rooms are very small and quickly become crowded when just two people are in the room. She works from 4 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon, while I work from 4 in the afternoon to 4 in the morning. Each stateroom has its own head (bathroom) with a toilet, sink, and shower.
There are several common areas as well. Across the passage way from me is the lounge. This is a very comfortable room with a couch, large chairs, many books, games, and a large screen TV with a DVD player. Another popular common area is the galley. This popularity probably can be attributed to the fact that the stewards on the ship are excellent cooks.
Did You Know:
Fish have tiny bones in their heads known as otoliths. This bone is found in the ear of the fish. These bones have circular rings and can help scientists determine the age of a fish. Do you remember learning about other rings in nature that can be used to determine age? Reply below if you can think of one.
For Next Time: The Labs on the Oscar Dyson