Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kailey - Data, outreach, abalone and food.

     Last week was all about data entry, number crunching, outreach and amazing food.  Early in my week I entered data and read papers about oysters, progress but not outwardly exciting.
    Tuesday I met up with Denise Crowe who does outreach for SPMC and Gemma, a graduate student.  We loaded up the outreach trailer with sea life and headed to WWU main campus.   We participated in a program for younger students to interest them in the sciences called Campus to Compass. There were two groups of students who all seemed to have a great time.
Denise Crowe educating scientists in the making.
Sea cucumber mouth.

     After we returned to Shannon Point and got everything situated I met up with Anne and Annie and we went to Dr. Dinnel's house for dinner.  Anne and Annie are working with Dr. Dinnel, Nate Schwarck and others on native Pinto abalone restoration.  The rumors were true and we were treated to an amazing meal with great company.

Baked oysters with ginger and wasabi were just some of the delicious offerings.
      I crunched some numbers the next day then cleaned and prepared the temperature and salinity sensors we recovered for download later this week.  I made crab rangoon for everyone with fresh crab that Eric and I got diving on Sunday.

A gorgeous day for a dive.
     Thursday morning Crista and I were lucky enough to join Nate, Jay, Anne and Annie on the Zoea and accompany them on a Pinto abalone out-plant site survey.  The weather wasn't cheerful but our intrepid divers made two dives finding, counting and measuring previously planted juvenile abalone.  They discovered one abalone so big there was no way it was an out-plant which is a wonderful sign for a locally very threatened species.

Pre-dive planning and safety check.
Nate, Anne and Ann preparing to descend.
Crista the photographer getting her photo snapped for once.
  You couldn't pry the smiles off Annie and Anne's faces when they returned, they had a good dive and reassuring abalone finds.  On the way back to the marine the fog finally burned off and the day turned gorgeous.

Anne and Annie chatting about the dive.
That is one happy diver.

      On top of surveying abalone out-plant sites Anne is also researching diet options for juvenile abalone.  Her babies had come to the lab the day before and I was surprised how tiny they are, only a few mm.
Anne's baby abalone. (It is red, the green on the bottom is algae.)
     That evening nearly everyone got together and we celebrated Thanksgiving in July. Everyone cooked something and it was really fun to see the differences and similarities in what everyone considered traditional.  It was a really wonderful evening with people I am really grateful to have had a chance to meet and get to know.

Umi captured the group nicely.
Anne cutting the bird.

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