Monday, November 28, 2011


Whale watching
Today we saw a few whales, who decided to hang out around the boat almost all day. It was a beautiful, still day, and the whales made it almost perfect. We all think it was a female Minke whale and her calf, because one was much larger than the other and they stuck very close together. They spent the entire day going back and forth under the boat, enjoying the clear blue water and investigating the sounds coming from the large pumps we had deployed over the side of the ship. Minke whales are one of the smallest whales, and they tend to be found in the open ocean rather than close to the coast. They are also baleen whales, which means they have baleen, a substance that looks and feels like hair, instead of teeth. They use this to filter phytoplankton and krill out of the water, just like in "Finding Nemo" when the whales "swallows" Dory and Marlin.
Minke whale

Next we will be heading to TAG (Trans-Atlantic Geo-traverse), a station that is directly over the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, an underwater mountain range in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. More on this later!

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