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Journals 2008/2009

Nancy Sills
Creekside School, Cataula, GA

"Assessment of Freshwater Resources Offshore New England and Marine Mammal Observing"
August 12 - 25, 2009
Journal Index:
August 12 - 13 - 14 - 15 - 16 - 17 - 18
           19 - 20 - 21 - 22 - 23 - 24 - 25

August 16, 2009
Too many dolphins and not enough oil!

I woke to the compressor firing and only one gun going off. This is good. We have completed 6 of 11 lines that we have to complete. There are 23 lines that were planned.

Then two hours later the compressor shut down because a sensor indicates that it was getting too hot. They were not sure if it is a faulty sensor or it is truly getting too hot. They are letting the compressor cool down and will fire it back up later to test the sensor.

The marine mammal observers saw a school of tuna this morning. Some of us would have liked to go "fishing" for supper tonight - oh well, they moved away too quickly.

This afternoon we had a call from the flying bridge that there was a pod of dolphins. They were short-beaked common dolphins, around 50 of them. They were about 500 meters off the port side, too far away to be a problem.

I worked more on the calculations and a chart to show an average of the soundings. It is getting easier and I was even able to help out with explaining a problem they were having on Excel. Not a big deal in the over all scheme of things but it made me feel useful.

Excitement! - A pod of dolphins are feeding right ahead of the ship and we have to shut down the guns. We pile out to the bow and watch these wonderful creatures dive and leap out of the water. They are there for about 5 minutes and then left as they came. It is wonderful. The guns start again and "life" goes on.

This was the afternoon for starting and stopping. Turtles, dolphins, compressor too hot, all these seemed to cause us to be on and then, off line.

We only have five gallons of oil left. We should be able to get supplies Tuesday morning from a ship that is coming out from Woods Hole. We all hope that the compressor waits until then to give out.. If this does not happen we will use the sparker until we get more.