2015-2016 USAP Field Season
Ocean acidification seascape: linking natural variability and anthropogenic changes in pH and temperature to performance in calcifying Antarctic marine invertebrates
Dr. Gretchen Hofmann
University of California Santa Barbara
Project Web Site:
Supporting Stations: McMurdo Station
This project will examine the effects of environmental change on a key Antarctic marine invertebrate — a pelagic mollusk, the pteropod, Limacina helicina antarctica. There are two main activities in this project: (1) To deploy oceanographic equipment — in this case, autonomously recording pH sensors called SeaFETs (sea field-effect transistors) and other devices that record temperature and salinity; and (2) To use these environmental data in the laboratory at McMurdo Station to study the response of the marine invertebrates to future changes in water quality that are expected in the next few decades. The researcher's objective this year is an early-season retrieval of three SeaFET sensors from Cape Evans, the Jetty, and New Harbor.
Field Season Overview
Field work for this project will have three main components: (1) A project diver will swap out existing sensors and deploy a new one at New Harbor. Sensors at all the sites will be left in place over the winter; (2) Organisms will be collected using folding plankton nets deployed through the sea ice using a Thern electric winch. The holes in the sea ice will be drilled with the Reed Drill; (3) Seawater samples will be collected daily using Niskin water-sampling bottles. Water samples will be returned to the Crary Lab for analysis. The holes in the sea ice will be bored with a Jiffy drill and will be sheltered by fish huts and an "apple" prefabricated fiberglass field hut.
Deploying Team Members