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Field Notes : Gulf of Alaska Project

July 2, 2012

Day One

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

By Jamal Moss, NOAA Fisheries, on the Northwest ExplorerOur first day was spent steaming from Juneau to our first sampling station at the southern end of the southeast Alaska grid. The crew threw the lines at 6 am and Captain Ray put Juneau (Alaska’s capital city) on our stern. Scientists Read More

October 2, 2011

Setting Out from Cordova

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by David Barbee from the Northwest ExplorerLeg 4 is underway, focusing on an area to the south and east of Kodiak Island. Scientists joining us on this leg include Ann Robertson, Jason Waite, Ashley Hovis, and returning for another leg are Ayla Doubleday, Shari Mullen, and David Barbee. A raft Read More

September 18, 2011

Sharks of the North Pacific

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest Explorer Blue sharkAs we continue along our Gulf of Alaska survey, catching a wide variety of fish species, we are reminded that this productive ecosystem can support large marine predators. It’s not surprising that our surface trawl intercepts piscivorous sharks that are Read More

September 17, 2011

Pacific Herring

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest ExplorerHere the crew begins to sort through a surface tow that caught 47kg of herring. The next afternoon, we set a tow slightly later in the day and caught 311kg of herring. These large aggregations of herring have been observed in the inside passage Read More

September 12, 2011

Fewer Fish in the Trawls

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

from the Northwest Explorer by Wyatt FournierWe do encounter other epipelagic predators, such as this North Pacific daggertooth.  Although this species has been documented up to 146cm, the larger of the two we caught was only 56.2cm.The catches in our surface trawls this month have been significantly lower Read More

August 13, 2011

Returning to Sea

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest ExplorerWe departed Juneau on September 3rd on board the Northwest Explorer. Our science crew for this portion of the survey is a diverse group of seasoned researchers, returning scientists, graduate students, and volunteers.From left to right: Dave McGowan, University of Washington PhD student Read More

August 11, 2011

Abundance of Salmonids

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest ExplorerFish samples for this survey are collected using a mid-water rope trawl that has been modified to fish at the surface by stringing buoys along the head rope. This allows us to catch juvenile and larval fish of our focal species that utilize the Read More

August 6, 2011

First Catch of Juvenile Cod and Pollock

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest ExplorerJuvenile Pacific cod and pollock.We have finished our first, and northernmost transect of the western Gulf of Alaska grid at a station in Granite Pass. This scenic near-shore station is tucked away between Granite Island and Fire Cove. It is in just 50 Read More

August 6, 2011

Heading out on Second Leg of Western Gulf Summer Survey

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest ExplorerPacific pomfret, a new species to our 2011 survey.We are now sampling in front of Stevenson Entrance, the body of water that separates Afognak Island from the Kenai Peninsula. This area is notorious for heavy weather as the winds and water push out of Read More

August 5, 2011

Juvenile Rockfish Difficult to Identify

Tags: Gulf of Alaska Project Field Notes

by Wyatt Fournier from the Northwest Explorer Juvenile rockfish.After the Northwest Explorer departed from Juneau and began traveling towards the western study sites, we stopped to sample two transects outside of Yakutat and Kayak Island that represent the central Gulf of Alaska. The outer station, offshore from Read More