28 May 2012

CSR_2 (May 21st - 27th)

The second university campaign week has ended, and the students are going back home. Which memories are they taking with them? The sea teaming with marine life? The hundreds of striped dolphins which crossed our path? Or the first two fin whale sightings of the season?

"Pelagos" spent several days in a row navigating an almost perfectly flat sea, and was able to drift with the currents overnight. The starry sky provided an unforgettable night, while fluorescent cephalopods swam around the hull. In the next few days, we had first-hand encounters with creatures usually only seen in books… Thousands of jellyfish and salps covering the sea surface, a jumping common dolphinfish, ten bird species, a young sea turtle (Caretta caretta), and two sharks! A couple of migratory birds went below deck and were rescued and set free again by the researchers.
Could these seven days spent on the CSR project be the beginning of a career in marine biology? Maybe. Or maybe this week was simply an opportunity to live the life of a scientist engaged with conservation, and embrace nature.             Francesca Zardin

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