Our last day

I was allocated to Velella today. It was our last day of collecting data for Healthy Waterways in Moreton Bay.

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A skipper for the day!

I was awoken by the sound of rain hitting the roof this morning. This could only mean one thing – it was going to be wet and cold whilst we were completing our research today. Luckily I was posted to Velella (the double hull catamaran) again today.

We set sail towards the south of the bay today to try to avoid some of the bad weather that was around. After dropping off Tender (a small boat where the Earthwatch volunteers jump over the side to survey the seagrass type and percentage cover on the bottom), we continued south. The weather looked promising, so we started our sled samples.

Due to the bad weather (lots of rain and wind) over night, there was a lot of sediment in the water column. This made it almost impossible to collect usable data as we were unable to see the bottom of the bay. Despite this, we broke the record for the quickest drop of the sled (90 seconds)! After several tries and even attaching an extra weight as well as my brothers GoPro (checking the footage with the wi-fi capability) we were not successful! We decided to sail towards the rendezvous site for lunch. At this point of the day, I was able to steer the boat with my assistant Megan sitting right next to me! It was tough at first to get the feeling of what I was supposed to do, but I slowly got the hang of it!

After lunch, it was decided that the best way for us to collect any sort of data was to send someone off the back of the boat to do duck dives to check the percentage cover and type of seagrass on the bottom (similar to Tender). This decision payed off – Lanie (the designated duck diver) completed 25 samples in just over an hour – a great effort!

It rained all the way back to port – it actually looked like we were sailing in the middle of the ocean as we could not see any land around us, despite us being in the centre of Moreton Bay with many islands as well as the mainland around us! It was a great chance to sit back (on the trampoline) and reflect on the week so far. I also had another chance to steer the boat as well as help with the sails.

day4  day4a 

I really enjoyed my day – I’ve come to realize that you get out what you put In and this is the how the day panned out. I can’t wait for tomorrow J

Thanks to Mark, Lanie, Bruce and Megan for the team effort today!

"Glaucie Talkie"

Again today started early as there was bad weather threatening in the afternoon. It was my second day on Glaucus setting bruvs in different locations around Moreton Bay. Our first two locations were around Peel Island and in between waiting for the samples to be ready, we had a snorkel around a beautiful coral reef, had a quick explore on the island and completed some GPS mapping of seagrass abundance and distribution. It was a great start to the day!

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Today I spent the day on Glaucus - a smallish boat that could venture into the shallow waters of Moreton Bay. We were using go-pros attached to a brick and a small float (so we could find our rep upon collection) to film which types of fish were using that particular patch of sea grass.

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I have been up for hours!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We were due to be on the boat by 6:30am! It sounded crazy, but it was beautiful that early in the morning – very still and flat water. We saw a pod of dolphins on our way to the first sampling site. Today I spent the day on Velella. This is a double hull yacht, which later in the day, I got to sail home!

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The day started really early with an 8am flight to Brisbane. Once arriving in Brisbane Airport, I had to find other Earthwatch participants. I had never met them, but I was looking for a person wearing an orange top and another with a large beard.

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