Rachel Down Under!

In Da Field

Posted in Australia, Sydney by rssmith218 on November 3, 2010

Rain continues to descend upon Sydney, but I am now more prepared than ever with my new FIELD HAT. Check it out:

Rain, sun, wind- bring it on! I am ready for the elements….or potentially for a role in 90’s music video?

Don’t I just fit right in with Eminem and LL Cool J?

So the field season is finally upon us, and I have spent the past two days out on the water (and out in the rain!). Yesterday we set up experiments in Sydney Harbour, and today we ventured south to Port Hacking. Here is a map (courtesy of Google Maps) to give a bit of geographic perspective.

I unfortunately left my camera at home for our trip to Sydney Harbour, but previous entries should provide plenty of images of Sydney Harbour. We focused on sites located west of the Harbour Bridge, near Parramatta River. Sydney Harbour is classified as a “modified estuary” according to our experimental design, and the area west of the bridge is highly industrialized. Here’s a picture from a previous trip to Cockatoo Island that is fairly representative of where we set up the experiments.

Now compare this to the beautiful Port Hacking, one of our so-called “unmodified estuaries.” What a difference, huh?

Want to come along for a day on the boat? Here we are jetting out to one of our many sites!

As our designated skipper (in the above photo, Katie) maneuvers us to our sites, the rest of us are busy assembling the separate components of the experiment. We each have individual portions of the experiment that must be attached together for deployment. For example, in the picture below, you can see that Jaz and Katelyn’s oyster bags (in yellow) are attached to my (and Graeme’s) plates (in blue), which are further attached to Katie’s sediment traps (in pink). All of the above are then attached to cement blocks, and following deployment, a line is run from the blocks to the shore. We are leaving these experiments out until February, when we will (hopefully!) find and retrieve them.

Here is an assembled experiment:

And now, deploying the plates by pushing them overboard.

To finish it up, securing our experiments to the shore. Hopefully they will still be there when we return in a couple of months!

For the rest of the week, I will be assembling my remaining panels, because, starting next week, we will be out in the field every day for the rest of November. We are going on overnight trips to estuaries up and down Australia’s eastern coast, and I can’t wait to see more of Australia over the coming weeks! Haha, just keepin’ it real in da hood!

p.s. Happy Melbourne Cup Day! We continued to work despite “the race that stops the nation” but we did manage to listen to the race via radio. Congrats to the French horse, Americain!

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3 Responses

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  1. Thomas said, on November 3, 2010 at 11:23 am

    That hat is gangster!

  2. Lenore said, on November 3, 2010 at 10:41 pm

    WHAT?! No picture of Rachel in a wet suit? I wanna see that!!!

  3. Aisha said, on November 15, 2010 at 5:48 pm

    haha. Love the hat and the parallels with LL cool J. You, him, and Eminem are like the 3 musketeers. LOL.


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