Friday, September 4, 2009

Found the calm, not the whales

We started the day in the northern part of our area where we have had almost all of our beaked whale sightings, but there was enough swell and wind that we headed south in search of better seas. We found enough lee from the island as we headed down to have workable weather by mid-morning. We covered over 80 miles along and across canyons and seamounts we had previously not searched that looked promising. However, like yesterday we saw almost no marine mammals (and zero beaked whales) despite the favorable conditions. At least in our week's worth of intense visual and acoustic surveys in the Tyrrhenian, marine mammals in the areas we have surveyed seem to be concentrated in particular spots.

Tomorrow will be the last operational day for MED-09. We intend to conduct visual and acoustic surveys, as conditions allow, heading back north and then continue on during the evening back to LaSpezia.