The seabird team had the most sightings today including 2 skylarks, 2 lapwings, a Manx shearwater, 32 great skuas, numerous gannets, kittiwakes and some fulmars. The cetacean team had 20 sightings of common dolphins as well as 2 minke whales.
The zooplankton team was quite busy during the night hours launching CTDs to depths of 2,176m. An ostracod was found at 1,200m and there were 6 stations covered from 8pm-7am. The main findings included euphausiids, some copepods, planktonic polychaetes and a single starfish larva. The average rate of the CTDs launched were that of 40m/minute.
Today we traveled down the Whittard Canyon and then up King Arthur Canyon and our current position is approximately 160 nautical miles off Fastnet, Ireland and 210 nautical miles off Land's End, England. The zooplankton team plan to have 5 stations tonight over the same track line which was covered earlier by the cetacean and seabird Teams.
Check back tomorrow for an overview on each of the teams and why their research is important for sustaining Ireland's oceans.
Today's blog contributor: Teresa Martin (Marine Mammal Observer)