Hello again! These past few days have been CRAZY! High winds, large swells, and stormy weather, but none of that stopped this awesome team of scientists from getting their work done. Let me introduce you to the wonderful team of divers that I get to work with on this trip. Our coxswain, Tod Recicar, comes all the way out here from Gray’s Reef( a National Marine Sanctuary off the coast of Georgia). Divers Maya Walton and John Burns are fellow graduate students at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa and they both study coral disease.
On this cruise I get to work on two project. First, I am retrieving all the bioerosion blocks that I put out last year. Finding tiny blocks about the size of your fist that are now completely fouled after a year is quite a challenge. However, we found 100% all the blocks that I put out last year at French Frigate Shoals!!!! We are also assisting John Burns on a coral health survey of the islands which have been a lot of fun.
Even on rough days, French Frigate Shoals is still a beautiful atoll filled with large table corals and lots and lots of birds. These next couple days we are transiting up all the way to Pearl and Hermes. Hopefully they will be just as successful as French Frigate Shoals!