This week I was responsible for preparing the necessary paperwork for our trip to Willapa Bay in Washington. This trip was important because it allowed us to duplicate the study we are doing here in the Yaquina Bay, and gives us more data so that our results are more reliable. Before we left I had to prepare the itinerary, make a project protocol, and create video criteria.Making the itinerary was pretty straightforward. Based on the activities we planned on doing, we needed to know the times for both low and high tide for the days we were there. During the low tide, we measured shell bags, deployed breeder traps (plexiglass box that is used to catch fish), and set up camera poles. I learned that on either side of the tide you have about two hours, give or take, so that’s the time I allotted for our activities. We had to start our activities for the day two hours before low tide, giving us four to five hours to work. Then we had a break before leaving to work for the high tide.
I also had to make a project protocol before the trip. This protocol outlined exactly what we did, why we were doing it, and what we needed to carry it out. Basically, it had to be detailed enough so that if someone wanted to repeat our procedure, they could do so without question.
The third thing I had to prepare was the criteria we will use for analyzing the underwater video. For the footage I was required to record every fish I see: its species, size, when it came into the video, and also what it’s doing. I was responsible for researching information to determine how we would decipher between a fish that is just passing through versus if it is hunting or foraging. This criteria will be used when video footage is viewed for this year.