2016-2017 Science Planning Summaries
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2016-2017 USAP Field Season
Project Detail

Project Title

Impacts of local oceanographic processes on Adélie penguin foraging ecology over Palmer Deep

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Event Number:

Program Manager:
Dr. Christian Fritsen

ASC POC/Implementer:
Samina Ouda / Cara Ferrier

Principal Investigator

Dr. Josh Kohut

Rutgers University
Institute for Marine & Coastal Sciences
New Brunswick, New Jersey


Supporting Stations: ARSV Laurence M. Gould
Research Locations: Joubin and Wauwerman Islands


The application of innovative ocean-observing and animal-telemetry technology over Palmer Deep (Western Antarctic Peninsula; WAP) is leading to new understanding and also to many new questions related to polar ecosystem processes and their control by bio-physical interactions in the polar environment. This multi-platform field study will investigate the impact of coastal physical processes, e.g., tides, currents, upwelling events, and sea ice, on Adélie penguin foraging ecology in the vicinity of Palmer Deep off Anvers Island, WAP. Research efforts will be guided by real-time surface convergences and divergences based on remotely sensed surface-current maps derived from a coastal network of high-frequency radars. The multidisciplinary research team will adaptively sample the distribution of phytoplankton and zooplankton, which influence Adélie penguin foraging ecology, to understand how local oceanographic processes structure the ecosystem.

Field Season Overview

The field team will sail on the ARSV Laurence M. Gould (LMG) to Palmer Station, with stops at Joubin and Wauwermans Islands. They will disassemble the three currently deployed codar sites (5 days each) and return the equipment by Zodiac to the LMG where it will be stored in two, 20 ft. shipping containers for transport back to Punta Arenas, Chile, and eventually to the home institution.

Deploying Team Members

  • Hank Statscewich
  • Peter Winsor