Muddying the waters

Feeling around a muddy seagrass bed, on the bottom of an estuary, with almost zero visibility, for misplaced sediment probes.

The question for that answer is “How did you spend your morning?”

It’s definitely the kind of scientific experience which will be fondly recalled from the safety of dry land, after a hot shower. In fact, it wasn’t all bad, except when I forgot to clear my snorkel after the tenth dive and inhaled a glob of muddy, brackish water. The work was for a project studying the difference in sediment chemistry between seagrass beds during periods of light and dark – the plants photosynthesise, releasing oxygen into an otherwise oxygen-poor environment. The early results look interesting, though it might be hard to tease out any major trends from the natural variability. Let’s hope the acid in my stomach deals with any nasties in the water, eh?

Another from Sunday's shorey bash. The colours and wave shapes were particularly good in this session. I also like the frozen array of water drops to the left.

Categories: Science | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Muddying the waters

  1. Wish I got out in the field more nowadays.
    I made sure at least 4 other students in my first year would hate me until we went our separate ways; I was determined to do a water column study and because first years weren’t allowed to work alone on this project, they were forced to get the waders on as well… I felt bad for them, but I really enjoyed the work!

    • Yeah, but I’ll bet if you ask them what they remember from their degree, it’ll be something along the lines of “That time we had to get on those massive waders and do the water study.”

      We had an Alumni get together where people wrote on a canvas of their favourite memories. The vast majority were character-building stories of tribulations faced in the field!

      • It would be interesting to find out – but I doubt their attitude towards me has changed.. but hopefully they can at least laugh about it in retrospect!


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