On Monday (3/10), we surveyed a reef site just south of Raph’s Wall, designated SR 168. We brought our data logger cinderblocks along, hoping that the site would be suitable for the transplant experiment. It has a similar wall as Raph’s, but this site has a wide sand channel and a gently sloping reef crest and flat from 60 feet to 30 feet by the anchoring point. This provides a beautiful, lazy swim back to the boat, with plenty of reef to look at while off gassing. We were able to sample 15 shallow colonies at SR 168 with no issues.
Yesterday, we returned to Tobacco Cay to resample the five colonies with missing original samples. After doing so, both of us tried our hand at the island’s lionfish spears. However, the point was too dull, so it often bounced off the lionfish to no effect. I'm sure we gave several of them migraines at least. Fortunately, we did not go hungry that night, as Martha made us a delicious dinner as always!
Today is our last day on the island, so we’re packing up our gear and samples for the trip home. It’s been a great week to be at CBC, especially given the tremendous help and support from the station managers, Jerry and Sandy, and the cook, Martha (the latter two are also great artists). We’ve accomplished all that we came here to do, and look forward to future collaborations and research at this station, both for my dissertation and future Voss lab projects.