Glaucus

Today was my last day out on the boats! I can't believe how fast this week has gone. Today I was on Glaucus, it was my second time on this boat.

We were setting up cameras on the seabed again and seeing what kinds of animals use the seagrass meadows. We were aiming to survey three different kinds of seagrass, Spinulosa, Zostera and Cymodocea, and we managed to find all three!

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Go-Pro camera and bait bag.

 

We used the same camera set-up (a Go-Pro attached to a brick to keep it on the seabed) and a bait bag (full of yummy Pilchards) placed in front of the camera. Today we were amazed because the water was crystal clear and we could see the bottom! We were in a different part of Moreton Bay which has waters of varying visibilities depending on where you are. We jumped in at the first site and placed our cameras, and then Tracey and I snorkelled for around 600m to try and find a different species of seagrass. We found a small patch but decided to hop back in the boat to find a better Spinulosa meadow! The water was so clear that we didn't need to even get into the water to see which kind of seagrasses were below us. Instead we just hung someone over the side of the boat and they stuck their face in the water to see the bottom. I volunteered to do this first and P-Max (Paul, the skipper) decided to push me in! I didn't mind because the water is nice and warm here (around 22 degrees). We placed the second lot of cameras and had a snorkel here to make the most of the clear water! We saw loads of Spotted Seastars and heaps of Sea Cucumbers.

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A sea cucumber Sea sponge Spotted Sea Star I found a seastar!

 

 

When it had been an hour we raced back around with the boat and picked up the 8 cameras. We headed straight to our 3rd site so that we didn't waste any time! We were looking for a field of Cymodocea (another kind of seagrass) to place the final lot of cameras for the day. We found a great meadow and jumped straight in, The tidal current here was the strongest I have ever been in. I was swimming hard against it and I was barely even moving. Because Moreton Bay is so shallow the tides rush and out very quickly which creates very strong currents. These can be really dangerous unless you are a very good swimmer, and even then you have to be very careful.

One of the biggest challenges today was staying warm. The air temperature was cooler than the temperature of the water and this means that you can get cold very quickly! We had lots of layers on and every time we go out of the water we put big windproof jackets on straight away. We stayed out for around 6 hours and decided to head back to the research station. after picking up the 3rd lot of cameras, for a long, hot shower!

Tomorrow we are doing some sightseeing around the island and then heading home just after lunchtime. Can't wait to see you all next week!