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Journals 2003/2004

Sandy Pratt
Woodstock Academy, Woodstock, CT

"Role of Zooplankton grazers in harmful algal bloom dynamics"
R/V Endeavor, Bay of Fundy
June 30 - July 8, 2003

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July 5, 2003

My circadian rhythm has been completely altered. I slept until 9:30 again and missed 2 stations. It is so dark down under that it always seems to be the middle of the night. Lynne gets up early. I assume it is about 5 am and decide to sleep a little longer and then its 9:30. I heard the CTD drop on deck again and jumped out of bed. As I made my way up the stairs to the main lab, Allan started explaining the change in protocol for the 800 mL of net concentrate. Caroline and I processed the black filters for the 2 stations I had slept through and then we completely processed the next station with the new protocol that further concentrates the biomass. Unfortunately, I did not notice that he had also changed the protocol for the SEt buffer tubes in his log book so 2 stations were run with only 2 mL of concentrate instead of 5 mL of concentrate. I confessed my error. There is so much that needs to be remembered. Occasionally, I was also allowed to make notes in Allan's logbook which delighted me.

The afternoon was spent resting some and them completing another water column pump station at 40, 35, 30, 25, 20, 12, 10, 8, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1 m. We were also supposed to stop at 15 m. I am glad that I am not the only one that makes mistakes. Allan again took 5 mL of each of Maura's 20 mL of concentrate. Subsamples have to be prepared under 3 protocols for each depth. It is 22:35 (10:35 pm) and we are waiting for the incubation period to end. We will probably filter until midnight. Some folks have deserted to watch a movie. Whit and Dave are working away. I am amazed at how hard the grad students work.

I just found out that 3 more stations are scheduled tonight with the hope of finishing by 3 am. I will not make it that long. It is 11:30 now. For some reason, the scientists tend to gear up toward the end of the day resulting in lots of night work. It is remarkable how the division of labor has occurred. Caroline and I are handling all of Allan's samples and Ben, Howard and Dave are processing all of the chlorophyll a samples. Ben, Greg's undergraduate summer intern, has been a wonderful addition to the team. He makes everything fun. He is always making upbeat comments and has formed "Team Chlorophyll" with appropriate cheering.

Caroline and I did not finish all of the samples. It was 1 am and we were about half-done. I said to Caroline "that's it, I'm doing one more and going to bed". We were suppose to do 2 filtrations of each depth sample and starting with 8 meters, Caroline had put half the sample into the filter and then put the bottle down away from the filter with a bang of finality. I followed her lead with the 12 m bottle. The noise of the vacuum pump was becoming intolerable. She decided that we were not going to do "one" more and we put all the samples in the fridge. I was so tired, I did not even collect all of my stuff--journal, wet gear, etc. and take it to my cabin as I had done each night.

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