Arctic Ocean exploration: Wednesday 2 May
We have stopped and started since Monday due to bad weather and with waves up to 8.5 metres the ship cannot launch the sampling gear. It has also been snowing! It is very difficult to show the sea in still photos but views from the bridge give some idea.
The GO Sars is a modern research ship with dynamic positioning; this gives impressive accuracy for sampling and bottom photography as well as returning to an exact position for repeat sampling. We have managed a deep station over 2200m with the beam trawl and the sample has some strange fish along with crustaceans and starfishes of many kinds.
A sledge haul from the same site came up with four purple sea urchins along with three of the bivalves that I had come to collect. Hopefully colleagues in Paris will be able to identify the symbiotic bacteria that live in the gills of the bivalve.
We will now move to shallower water where sampling will be quicker, not the 4 hours it takes to do a trawl in abyssal depths.