Day 20: Last Full Data Day

Today was our last full day of data collection. Turtle team headed to 5 reefs to collect our last bit of data, while the Benthic Team stayed behind to analyze their wealth of data. Although we did have another run in with some man-o-war, the day went swimmingly as planned. Reef 28, the fringing reef of reef 25 north, the “thumb” of the Sandbar, reef 14 as well as reef 6 were surveyed in order to obtain sea turtle abundance data.

Reef 28 did not have an abundance of turtles, however, Fringing Reef 25 North had many, especially juveniles. Even with the poor visibility due to stormy weather in Kāne’ohe Bay the past few days, we were able to collect valuable information through our surveys.

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No turtles were seen at the Sandbar, as was expected as this area is frequented by many boats throughout the day. However, the algae species Gracilaria salicornia was encountered, despite the lack of sea turtles. Reef 14 had a few sightings, as well as Reef 6. At Reef 14, just when we were getting back to the boat, half of our team realized that they had misplaced their clipboard full of data during the survey. Following this, we all as a team split up to cover the entire reef in order to find the clipboard, and luckily we found it!!! Somehow we have been quite successful in recovering lost items while at sea over these past three weeks. 

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As we gather all of our data in these last days, we are able to start running statistical analyses and create maps from our data, giving us insight into the relationships between species in the diverse ecosystems of Kāne’ohe Bay.

In the coming week, as the course comes to a bittersweet close, we will be hardpressed to finalize our results and will finally present our findings of the past month.

 

-Tess Chapman

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