Today is the day! We officially set sail on the North East Pacific Seamount expedition onboard the E/V Nautilus. This 64-meter vessel was built in 1967, in Eastern Germany for the sole purpose of being used as a research vessel and is currently operated by the Ocean Exploration Trust. We will be surveying SGaan Kinghlas Seamount, Dellwood Seamount, and Explorer Seamount. Our purpose is to shed some light on the rich biodiversity these seamounts provide to the open ocean and surrounding areas. We will also be gathering baseline data for scientific long-term monitoring and research. The E/V Nautilus is equipped with two Remote Operated Vehicles ROV that will take video of the seamounts and instruments that will take samples, along with a multi-beam mapping system that will be mapping the ocean floor of the seamounts and surrounding area. This is exciting and important work, as these seamounts have been not been extensively studied in the past. Dellwood and Explorer Seamounts are located further South and are situated within the Offshore Pacific Area of Interest. The SGaan Kinghlas Seamount is within a Marine Protected Area, which is cooperatively managed by the Haida Nation and Fisheries and Oceans Canada.
The expedition started here at the Institute of Oceanic Sciences in Sydney, BC where the E/V Nautilus was docked. The day started off loading the vessel with all the science equipment and supplies required for the 16-day expedition. This was followed by a media event with the partners for this expedition: Haida Nation, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Oceans Networks Canada, Oceana Canada, and Ocean Exploration Trust. We then began our transit to Dellwood Seamount. Once there we will be deploying an autonomous mooring for long term ocean monitoring, built and designed by Ocean Networks Canada.. I will be sending updates throughout this expedition, so follow along this exciting journey with me! #HaidaSeamounts #PacificSeamounts2018