Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Red Sky at Night, Sailors' Delight; Red Sky in the Morning, Sailors Take Warning

Sunset on day 3 of the cruise, before the storms began.

Sunrise before hurricane Sean.
We weathered hurricane Sean, and are now on our way to Bermuda. We are a little behind schedule though, because with the bad weather everything takes longer. When we put our instruments in the water, we have to do everything more carefully, and lower the instrument more slowly through the water since there are strong currents and winds. We also have certain "stations" (specific latitude and longitude coordinates in the ocean) where we are getting samples, but in between sampling times for different scientists the boat sometimes drifts off the station where we began, and it takes a while to drive the boat back to the original station after each scientist is taking turns gathering their samples. This has caused us some delays in the schedule, so we have canceled one of our stations before we get to Bermuda.

Besides the rough weather, we are definitely getting into much warmer waters and it is really hot and humid outside despite the wind. We have also seen a bunch of flying fish (fish that jump out of the water and glide across its surface as though they are flying), including one that almost hit me in the head when it jumped on board the ship on accident. They are attracted to the lights of the boat at night, and sometimes jump out of the water and find themselves on deck. We catch them and throw them back overboard. We also saw a huge Mahi, a really bright blue and green open ocean fish, that was circling the boat for hours last night. Many of the crew members were mad that we didn't come wake them in the middle of the night so they could try to catch it. Some of the crew are quite avid fishermen.

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