Thursday, 4 September 2008

On station... again!

It's starting to get to the point where life on the ship is falling into a routine: stumble out of bed at some crazy hour after not nearly enough very disturbed sleep, crawl your way to the lab part of the ship, make measurements and take samples like some kind of zombie, and then repeat this every time there is a station (apart from the getting out of bed part, of course). Offshore, one gets a few hours between station (such that you might only get one CTD cast per shift) but as you go inshore, and CTDs get closer and closer together (and take less time as they are not going to 3000m down and back at about 1 meter per second), things can get quite frantic! We're currently in the frantic inshore phase.

The positions on this ship are recorded in a very odd format - degrees, minutes, seconds - but seconds with three digits (without a . in them)?! An example of the display I access would be 25° 50.493E 45° 30.129S. I've been cheating and simply moving a decimal point when "converting" to decimal degrees that I need for google maps (so this example would become -25.50493,45.30129) - which seemed to work well enough until now, when the ship was apparently inland and still making great progress! I tried dropping the last digit off the seconds, inputting that as a traditional lat/long and converting to decimal properly , and it seems like a more realistic position. Which would put us about here. I was kind of uncertain about this lax conversion, but this certainly shows me the error of my ways - I did think this kind of laziness would catch up with me eventually! I will ask someone exactly what weird format this *is* so I can do real, accurate conversions...

Another friend of mine, Pierre Nel, has come up with an improvement to this blog. Those of you that use Twitter can now follow a Twitter feed that updates itself every time we make a post on this blog. You can access the feed here.

Hi James et al - seeing some interesting stuff I see! I could have helped with some of the rat-tails.... (next time). Did you get my email sent on 2 September? In it I requested the following if you see them:

Can I ask for two more fish species for the request list: Cephalopholis argus (peacock rockcod) and Lutjanus fulvus – need 20 - 30 finclips in ethanol with normal fish/locality info - for Matt Craig in Hawaii – has worked with Phil a lot on groupers. Doubt you will get 30 (hope you don’t or goodbye coral!) but see what you get.

Message for Jessica - Camilla is very annoyed that she didn't get some Norweigan chocolate...
Hi Sean, yes, I did get that message, thanks.
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