Icy Inverts 2004
Daily Journal of the R/V Laurence M. Gould
Dec. 5, 2004 --- Position  Lat/Long: S062° 24.221 W058° 37.757
[Wind: NW 13-15k / Air Temp:-0.3C / Wind Chill: -12.7C /Water Depth: 1432 meters]
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We're becoming more acquainted here on the ship, so I thought I'd share with the readers a few details on who's aboard the L.M. Gould - not all at once, but a representative group or person each day I can fit them in.

Here are some of the lab crew on deck of the LMG (they think they look like candy corn): (LtoR) Dr. Susie Balser (IWU), Dr. Vicke Starczak (WHOI), Regina Campbell-Malone (WHOI), Rob Jennings (WHOI), Rebecca Belcher (Auburn), Heather Blasczyk (Auburn) and Adriene Burnette (Auburn) [photo by Ken Halanych]

November 2004
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December 2004
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Student Bios: Where they're from, how they came to be on this cruise, and in some cases, what they hope to gain from being here. [See Image 1]

Brennan Phillips-- I have just graduated from URI with a degree in Ocean Engineering with a focus on remote sensing and ROV's (Remotely Operated Vehicles). Through some fortunate experiences in scientific study, my academic interests are now crossing over from engineering to biology. This spring, I will begin a master's program in Oceanography at the University of Connecticut, with Pat Kremer as my advisor. I was invited to participate in this cruise through my academic associations with Pat and with Larry Madin. I am one of the certified scientific divers for the salps study group.

Rebecca Belcher-- I am one of Dr. Ken Halanych's PhD students from Auburn University. I am on this trip because the samples collected throughout the trip will be the basis of my PhD dissertation research.

Heather Blasczyk-- I'm a research assistant in Dr. Ken Halanych's lab at Auburn University. I'm here to help sort and process the samples we get and to help out in any other way I can. Seeing penguins, glaciers, icebergs and Antarctica is just an added bonus!!!

Adriene Burnette-- I am doing a master's degree in Molecular Phylogenetics of Polychaetes under Dr. Ken Halanych at Auburn University. Ken asked me to come and help sort samples and catalogue samples. I am also here to enjoy the experience of going to Antarctica.

Regina Campbell-Malone Regina-- is a Joint Program student at MIT/WHIO. The main focus of Regina's studies is whales, not zooplankton, but a little diversity of study is always desirable in the development of a well-rounded scientist. After all, whales eat some of the things we're pulling up in our tows.

Rob Jennings-- Rob is a 'lifer' in the PhD joint program at MIT/WHOI, or so it seems (he's on what he calls "the 6 year plan"). Rob worked in Dr. Ken Halanych's lab when Ken was at WHOI, and was invited to do…what the rest of us are doing - a lot of work, and a little comic relief.

Jonathan Craft-- Jon is an undergraduate student at Auburn University. He had started out in engineering, but has been bitten by the biology bug, and has hit the ground running. Besides being knowledgeable beyond his years in the laboratory, he makes an excellent "mule", shoveling samples from the deck to the sorting table, or carrying heavy buckets of "throw away" stuff and chucking it overboard after it has been sorted and catalogued. He's also becoming an expert at "firing off" XBT's.

We towed the epibenthic sled in 894 meters of water and pulled up mostly mud and rocks. Now, not that that's a bad thing, there are lots of critters in there, but they have to have a "bath" before we can tell one lump from another - unless, of course, they wiggle in the gray mush. By the way, this mud does not smell, like the mud at home does. It hardly has any smell at all. In this muck we're finding lots of tubeworms. Dr. Thomas Dahlgren is very adept at slicing the worm's tube (it's like wet paper), and with lab forceps, gently retrieving the worm from its hiding place for future study. These worms are not 'beefy and strong' like the ones in your garden. In fact in comparison, they are quite limp and icky, but they hold a strange scientific fascination to some pretty manly men here. Perhaps it's time one of them wrote a Journal entry about their invertebrate magnetism. Large scaleworms are also a regular player in the tows, and I can see why the boys like them! Gross!! [See Image 2]

It's definitely getting colder here, and 'multi-layers' is the dress of the day. When you have enough layers to really be warm out on deck, including the "Mustang Suit", you move sort of like a spaceman in all of that garb. (I wonder if "Michelin Man" would be the better analogy.) Anyway, it's awkward but effective.

The word today is that we will go to Deception Island some time in the next two days. There is some exciting science planned for that harbor, using the ROV, benthic grab and dive operations.


 Among other things, they hope to retrieve whale bones from the harbor floor. It may also be another opportunity for us to get off the ship and explore more exotic landscapes.

Dinner Menu (shipboard, 12/5):