Some statistics from the Odyssey Gulf Research Expedition so far: ODYSSEY Gulf Blog (from the lab), November 15-25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!  It sunny and crisp and cool here in Maine.
We have been busy storing data and samples and getting ramped up for the upcoming weeks and months of laboratory work.  We compiled some of the statistics from the Odyssey Gulf Research Expedition so far. They are quite pleasing as they illustrate a very successful trip of sample gathering.
Samples Collected:
52 whale biopsies (8 from the Atlantic and 44 from Gulf of Mexico) collected
Humpback, fin, Bryde’s and sperm whales
52 DNA samples
52 skin samples for metal analysis
51 blubber samples
40 whale cell lines
82 fish sampled
57 invertebrate samples
6 dolphin blows collected
100+ hours of acoustic recordings
90 liters of seawater collected from 2 depths at 15 sites
6.3 kilograms of sediment collected from 10 sites
4 air samples collected (two weeks of continuous air per sample)
Effort:
1,800+ hours looking of whales
60+ hours “on whales”
700+ hours of video taken
10,000+ digital photos taken
14 Maine students worked at sea
16 USM students, staff and faculty worked at sea plus another 6 in lab at USM
16 additional personnel (Ocean Alliance crew, guests) involved at sea
7 Facilities/Universities visited
20+ scientists engaged
Thanks to an excellent effort by USM’s Public Affairs office, we held a press conference to tell the state we were back and report the success of the effort and the samples collected.  This conference led to a pot of press as all three local tv channels had us on the noon, 6 pm and 11 pm news, Maine Public Radio had us on at least twice and our major newspaper wrote a nice article on our efforts. The Associated Press sent our story our nationally.
You may recall that fish we caught in Grand Isle- we had some tissue tested and it was confirmed as oil in the fish.  We are now raising money to test the whales.
Enjoy your turkey day!  We will have 21 for dinner and be giving thanks for so many blessings including all of you.
John
(Blog by: Science Director, John Wise)

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