This week started off pretty intense and interesting. From 9 AM to 4 PM, Ali and I were one of the teams that did Habitat Mapping in the Reserve, but to get to our points (Cox Canyon/Winchester) we had to hike quite a distance. I don't know if you've ever tried hiking through a forest (not pathways, but under, over, and through brush) in really tight pants, but it's not the fastest way to get somewhere. I was really glad to be in waders when we hit the marsh though, with the appearance of the marsh came the shoe hungry mud. Both Ali and I started off pretty strong, but I took one wrong step, and my leg was swallowed by the marsh. Unlike previous encounters with sinky mud, I couldn't pull my foot out, because it had slid between two tree logs, one on top of the marsh, the other beneath the surface. It was definitely a great reminder of why hiking on your own can be dangerous. Thankfully, I wasn't alone. Ali and I spent some time getting my foot free, but the shoe was left in the mud. After we both had mud up to our elbows, the shoe came free. Even with the mud incident and the fact my waders were ripped by the hike, it was a really fun experience. There was a lot of cool wildlife and signs of wildlife. Before we sat down for lunch, we passed by some trees that had evidence of beaver munching. When we were hiking back out, we passed by Cox pond we saw a small beaver dam. After we returned to OIMB, I took a quick shower and got ready for the potluck the South Slough staff was putting on for their interns. Chris made really good brownies, but I was lame and didn't bring anything. Since it was a farewell to the other interns who would soon be leaving, we were asked what our favorite and least favorite parts of working for the Slough were. So far, my least favorite was has been hiking in waders. Despite Monday being intense, I chose it as one of my favorite parts, because I'll now be one of the infamous interns that are included in warnings of why we don't do certain things, like take a wrong step in a marsh. I've also really liked kayaking, doing the eelgrass monitoring, and being out on the skiff. There were two dogs at the potluck, so I had fun petting both of them.
I only worked half the day on Tuesday, but I continued working on my graphs since the axis on one of them was off by one unit. Chris came in with over 300 Green Crabs, so I volunteered my services of writing down the data. I ended up helping measure crabs, which was pretty fun, probably because I didn't get pinched hard. I didn't make it to Professional Development, because I was out of town. Wednesday comprised mostly of working on my temperature data. Seminar this week was by Dr. Glen Ford on The Secret Life of Dead Birds. He started his presentation by describing the New Carrisa's accident off of Coos Bay in 1999, resulting in an oil spill after the ship broke apart. Listening to the measures that were taken to get rid of the bow of the ship was horrifying and amusing at the same time. Not many vessels can claim to survive an explosion and being shot 69 times. Only a Mark 48 torpedo was capable of sinking the Ship that Would Not Die. Thousands of gallons of oil were released when the ship broke apart, killing thousands of birds. When the Deepwater Horizon oil spill happened in the Gulf of Mexico, more birds were oiled. The number of birds that are killed by the oil spill is important because it plays into how much the people/company at fault has to pay for repair and restoration.
Thursday and Friday were both early mornings. Caitlin, the OSU grad student who let me use some of her eelgrass density data for my project, came to collect more data for a few days, so I was able to pay her back by helping in the field. Since I am going to OSU in the Fall, it was cool to see how the information I have gathered during my internship here could easily become something I continue with even after my internship ends. The mascot of OSU is a beaver, so it seemed like my week was sticking to a theme. Thursday was at Barview, so Caitlin and I raced the incoming tide, but we still only got 5 quadrats each sampled. On Friday, Adam took us out in the skiff to Valino. Chris had some free time in the morning, so he came along to help also. With Chris' help, I was able to complete all 10 of my quadrats. Caitlin is much faster than I am, and she also got all 10 of her quadrats completed.
Thursday at Barview, although it was colder, had a lot more wildlife to show off. I had to pick tiny sea stars and crabs, opalescent sea slugs, a kelp crab, an isopod, and several Eelgrass Sea Hares (Phyllaplysia taylori). Friday's wildlife mostly consisted of the sea stars I pulled off Caitlin's sensors and the hairy shore crab that greeted us when we arrived at Valino. Eelgrass meadows are so important for a variety of species, and it was cool to see so many species among the eelgrass. If the eelgrass continues to vanish, these species could be left without a home.
On Saturday I helped Kerrigan, Ali, and Jenni with a University of Oregon journalism class that wanted some background on South Slough. I got to talk about my project a little, which was really good for experience. The class was highly interested in the eelgrass Ali preserved from Friday's excursion at Danger Point. The students were really friendly, and I even got to meet another LBCC graduate. The contrast of knowledge I have from my first day helping with the Master Naturalist class and the knowledge I have now is amusing to me. A few weeks ago I couldn't tell you the common names of some of the marsh grasses or much about eelgrass. I don't know all of it yet, but I still have time to learn.
Monday Amanda, Ali and I kayaked out to Hidden Creek at a very low tide. We knew going in that there probably wasn't going to be a whole lot of eelgrass at the Hidden Creek site, but we were determined to have fun anyway and the site has very sinky mud and very difficult to walk in. We did see eelgrass in the channel and along the channel sides from Charleston to Long Island but it was very sparse, and then there was no eelgrass from Hidden Creek to Hinch Bridge. It was really great to have Ali and Amanda there, they both were really patient with me, even though I was slow and needed help getting in and out of my kayak. Along our journey, we saw a lot of wildlife, my favorites being the two raccoons. One we saw early into the trip, it was small and waddled away quickly when it saw the oncoming people. The other was bigger, but it didn't have a tail. It walked from the woods to the edge of the water, washing its hands and grabbing things out of the water to eat. The second raccoon was braver than the first and stayed put for a while, even after I had passed it. I saw it later, peeking its face out of the woods further up the shore, making sure we were leaving its territory. We also saw many herons, crabs, vultures, and even a wasp nest. We didn't always have enough water to glide over the mud, so we tried a few interesting techniques to free ourselves. I ended up waddling on my knees at one point, determined not to let the mud get me. The scenery, despite the lack of eelgrass, was amazing. I have officially kayaked the entire South Slough, and even though I was tired and sore afterward, it was a really fun day, and highly recommend it to everyone. The saddest part of my day was returning to OIMB, and discovering we had no hot water in our dorm. We had it by the next morning, so I got my shower and cup of tea.
Tuesday and Wednesday comprised mostly of my working in Excel. I finished entering in the data from Valino Island, Danger Point, and Hidden Creek into the eelgrass density Access database, so I got to export that data into my Excel worksheets. Even though all the zeros might seem pointless to enter in, the number of sites and data points taken is important for the statistics Ali and I will be doing towards the end of my project. Ali and I also downloaded the data from the two Hobo loggers we gathered on Friday, so on Wednesday, I got to enter that data into my temperature graph. To my great sadness, I had to remove the data from Site C 2017 for months October through December, because the logger was trying to tell us the water during those months was the same temperature as the water in the summer. I get to do some digging to try to find different data for those months that is more accurate. Ali taught me how to export data tables from SWMPrats, which is where I'll get the Sonde data to compare to South Slough's Hobo recorded temperatures. To my and Ali's surprise, the Sonde temperature and the Hobo temperature were more similar than we were expecting, with only the highs and lows of the Hobo data being a little higher.
Professional development was on Tuesday, and I got to watch the five interns who didn't go last week share their research proposals. After that, we started working on our posters. I am using Microsoft Powerpoint to build my poster on because I have the more experience in it than other programs we could use. The seminar on Wednesday was by Dr. Kirill Kotkin on the research in the Russian Arctic. He had a great sense of humor and a lot of beautiful pictures of the Russian Arctic. The presentation was inspirational to watch because English wasn't his first language. I can barely stutter out a presentation in my first language, I can't imagine being able to do it in a different language.
I found myself back at Indian Point on Thursday, helping Amanda, Jenni. amd Ali with vegetation monitoring. This time we weren't looking for Bog Lilies, we were identifying, measuring, and counting trees, shrubs, and other vegetation. For me, it felt like a mash-up of the lily monitoring and the monitoring we did at Bull Island. Amanda and I were assigned to do the trees but ended up doing the vegetation quadrat at the second site. I continue to fail to find words on how to describe how much I love being in forests. Yes, there are spiders, sap, and bugs like mosquitoes and wasps. However, there is something serene about the different shades of green, something peaceful about the sound the trees make as the wind blows through them. I won't lie, it was pretty nice to have solid ground beneath my feet, no shoe-sucking mud. However, I still think I prefer the eelgrass beds because I don't have vegetation attempting to poke inside my ears, and I can stand up without getting a spider in my hair. Once we returned to OIMB, my younger sister Caitlin called. It sounded like we both had an interesting past couple of days, and even though we fight more than we get along, it was nice to hear her voice.
I volunteered to help Chris catch Green Crabs on Friday, and later will be cleaning off the Sondes and continuing to work on my data. This weekend we are going to the Oregon Coast Aquarium and Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport. So much to do in an increasingly short amount of time. Some of the other South Slough interns who have been here longer than me are already starting to get ready to go home, so I'm definitely feeling the time crunch. That being said, I'm going to get everything done to the best of my ability, and I'll continue giving this internship 100%.
This weekend was the first real weekend the REU's as a whole group didn't have something planned, so Natalie and I enjoyed the freedom. We decided to explore some of downtown Charleston, first adventuring down to Amethyst and Alchemy. Inside the store was really cool! I ended up getting a $10 grab bag and two candles. Next, we went for coffee at Bayside Coffee. Well, Natalie got coffee. Not being a coffee drinker, I got a Strawberry Italian Soda. After enjoying sitting the sun for a while, we ventured into Thrifty Sisters. Inside, I found the coolest mug! It has a little pocket attached on the outside for teabags!!! For only $.50, it was mine. Later, I went into the South Slough work area, and I put some time into my Excel database. Sunday was a super lazy day, I binged a lot of Netflix.
Monday was a fantastic day to start my week off with. I completed adding the past data to my Eelgrass Density and Percent Cover graph, along with calculating the standard deviations and standard errors, which allowed me to add error bars to my graph. This data and graph focus on showing the startling differences in Zostera marina (the eelgrass species I am studying this summer) populations in South Slough and other places in Oregon (in this case, Coos Bay). Another shout-out and thank you to all involved OSU people (especially Caitlin and Jen) for letting me use their data, along with Oregon Department of Fishery and Wildlife. The Coos Bay data I received for all of you really has helped the dataset I have from South Slough have something to be compared to. Once I upload South Slough's 2018 data to the graph and do all the calculations for it, the graph should be complete. Ali and I spent time trying to color coordinate which datasets in the graph shared similar locations like all the South Slough sites were various shades of green. The downside of working on the computer is that they really like to freeze on me, especially just before I try to save my work. I saved frequently though, so I never lost any data when Excel would freeze or crash.
Tuesday was another day of working in Excel. Although I didn't accomplish as much as I would have liked, I completed sorting through South Slough's hobo temperature data for 2005 and 2007-2008. I would use 2006 data, but 2006 was a transition year among South Slough staff, so no data were collected. Sorting through data might not sound impressive, but some files were entered in by different people, so they weren't always labeled clearly. Also, there were a LOT of files. The data is supposed to be gathered and entered quarterly (January-March, April-June, July-September, October-December), for both sites A and C. So: 4 files per site per year, times 2 sites, times 3 years... that's 24 files to find. And when I find the files, I have to edit the data so I only have the temperature of when the temperature logger was in the water, and not when the logger was taking the temperature of the air before and after it was retrieved from the estuary. I also get to tackle 2016-2018 (successfully finished 2016 already!). This data will be used to see if there has been a shift in temperature in the Slough, seeing how Global Warming is warming the entire planet. It's possible the increase in temperature could be a factor in the decline in eelgrass, which is good for my project, not so much for the planet.
Wednesday was a nice slow day in contrast to the quickly paced computer days and the fieldwork days I knew would follow. Ali had an early morning meeting, so I did some mild work in Excel on my temperature data. Ali then gave me a few hours off, because I was still ruffled up from my presentation. I'm really lucky to have a mentor like Ali, someone who gets on my level to tell me to take a break, someone who tells me to tell them when I'm feeling overwhelmed. I'm never one to back down from a challenge, and I know I have a mild perfectionist complex when it comes to my work, add that to my fear of letting people down, the result is often a stressed army-of-one that isn't productive. The staff of South Slough estuary is a fantastic representation of why asking people for help and splitting up tasks is healthy for everyone. Everyone has strengths and plays towards them, whether it's field and lab work, education/outreach, coordinating, or office work. They take days off for personal reasons or family time, they help each other, they help change the world. I'm sure it's more complicated and isn't all sunshine and rainbows, but it's definitely a work environment I thrive in. Later in the day, we had Seminar, this week by Grant McDermott. I liked his presentation because he openly confessed to not knowing much about Marine Science, as his focus was on Economics. He also really slimmed down the math and economic, so I understood what was being talked about. I was going to go with Wyatt for jellyfishing, but ended up going to bed early because I was exhausted.
Thursday arrived with an early morning, bright and early at 5:30 AM. Ali, Amanda, and I were joined by another South Slough intern named Kerrigan on our adventure to Valino Island for Eelgrass Sampling. On the way, we picked up SAMI and SeapHOx instruments. SAMI collects data on CO2, while SeapHOx does high resolution pH. While on Valino, and in-between eelgrass shoot counting, Ali and I took sediment samples and put new Hobo loggers in the field. Hobo loggers are how the temperature data is collected, that's the data I pull for the South Slough temperature data. Kerrigan and Amanda were real troopers because the mud at Valino was treacherous, and the foggy morning was very cold. I was saddened by how little eelgrass was at Valino, only 3-4 of our sampling areas had eelgrass. For an area that once held epic meadows, that almost barren mudflat was heartbreaking, especially after looking at photos before 2016, before the mass decrease in eelgrass density in the Slough. The ride to Valino in the skiff was a lot of fun, but getting back in the boat after getting stuck in the mud was hard. I was certain I was going to lose my shoe again and fell multiple times before safely clambering ungracefully into the skiff. As cold and muddy it was, none of us lost our sense of humor during the whole process, and there was much laughing. We ended up finding golf ball and a metal fork in the mud, so we took them with us to properly dispose of them.
To get to Danger Point, we had to hike from Hinch Bridge. Ali lead the way, followed by Amanda and I. The mosquitoes were bad before entering the forest and during certain marshy parts of the hike, but once we were in the forest or had a cool breeze they left us alone. Ali was really nice and did most of the mud walking once we reached Danger Point, Amanda stayed on the bank, looking at the map and recording data. While in the mud, Ali found a molt of a European Green Crab, which isn't a good sign. The most disheartening part of the whole trip was the lack of rooted eelgrass on site. All the eelgrass we found were strands that previous tides had washed up, but I couldn't see any that was growing. Since Ali and I are helping at the Interpretive Center tomorrow, she gathered some of the shoots and bagged them, as a visual aid. On the way back to OIMB, we hooked up the kayaks to the truck, and are prepared for kayaking on Monday.
My project encompasses trends in water quality, eelgrass density, percent cover in eelgrass, and the metabolic rate of Valino. Water quality encompasses things like water temperature, nutrients, the amount of chlorophyll, pH, and so many other things. Comparing present day to past data can be a challenge, but I have a network of support behind me. Ali is going to use the data I assemble in a grant for South Slough, and I can't put into words how cool I think that is. Even though the turn Zostera marina took is sad, being the person looking for conditions that may have attributed to the decrease is an honor and an amazing experience. I get to collect the data, use past data, and have amazing people willingly giving me their data to incorporate into my project. I get field and lab training, have interpersonal skill development, and so many opportunities to try new things. Sometimes this whole experience feels like a dream, and I surprised to wake up in the morning and find myself still here.
Although I don't do it very often, camping is something I really enjoy. Something about being surrounded by forest is serenely peaceful. I went in Wyatt's car with Matthew, and Chris to the campground, and we kept it pretty lively with jazz and sarcasm. After putting our tents up, we all went to Cape Arago Beach and played in the water. Campfire was probably my favorite part, we even told scary stories and made s'mores. Richard visited us, and he definitely took home the title of "Best Marshmallow Roaster". Tidepooling the next morning was AMAZING. I've been tidepooling before, but never in South Cove. My favorite creature I saw was the Porcelain Crab I pulled from under a rock. She was carrying many tiny eggs, and I felt bad for disturbing her. Cape Arago is a really extensive state park, and I really hope we visit it again later this summer.
Monday started off with more fieldwork. I tagged along with Adam to the Met station at Tom's Creek. A Met station is a weather station that has includes a relative humidity/temperature sensor, an anemometer (it measures wind speed/direction), a rain gauge (for measuring how much rain falls near the Met station), solar radiation sensor, and a barometer (it measures barometric pressure). The walk to the station was mildly hazardous, the ground was covered with deep holes, hidden deep within tall grass. It was a glorious day to be outside, the various environments I get to explore this summer are a gift.
I approached Tuesday with some mild apprehension. Ali, Amanda, Jenni, and I kayaked to Bull Island to do some Marsh monitoring. I didn't know what I feared more, the possibility of tipping my kayak over or the mud I knew was in store for me. Despite my fears, I was blown away by the enchanting beauty around me. Between the light reflecting off the water, the far-off trees, and the wind whipping through the marsh grasses, I felt truly blessed to be here this summer. Luckily for me, I did not end up stuck in the mud this time but did come close. Ali is an awesome mentor. She was really patient with me as I learned all the plants' names and continuously forgot their 6 letter code names. It's times like these I feel like a sponge, trying to soak up all the knowledge that I can. My favorite plant is the Brass Button, the tiny yellow flowers were a nice color variation from all the green and brown. Everyone returned from the excursion without kayak flipping, despite the best efforts ot the winds that blew against us.
We all got the 4th off, so I had a lot of free time on my hands. My friend, Juliet, stayed the previous night here at OIMB, so I was determined to get the most of the day. The first thing we did was go to the farmer's market, we ended up buying a lot of fruit. We had lunch at Bastendorff, and enjoyed the view for the incoming tide. I didn't join the others at the fireworks or at the bonfire at the OIMB beach, but instead spent my evening trying to catch up on some sleep. Ana introduced me to a site called Redbubble, so I got to admire some really cute Groot and succulent stickers I might get to cover my laptop. Next week I'm going to get up early for more fieldwork, so it was nice to have an extra day to myself.
Thursday was a really nice slow day. Well, I call it slow, but I got a lot of work done. In Excel, I pulled more data from Coos Bay and put it into my density and percent cover graphs, so now I have two really cool graphs that show how eelgrass numbers have changed over the years. Shoutout to Jen and Caitlin, who are letting me use their data in my project! I also made the finishing touches to my 2016 temperature data and started to work on 2005 data. What I constantly get reminded of is how picky Excel Pivot Tables are. Pivot Tables are really helpful, but you need to be exact with what data you put into it, or it won't give you accurate results. For the temperature data, I will be pulling from 2005-2008 (skipping 2006 because we don't have data) and 2015-2018. It felt really good to accomplish things today, and Friday will probably be much the same.
Natalie, Chris, and I went to help Wyatt Friday morning to do some "jellyfishing". We were hoping to find some pleurobrachia for Wyatt and his lab, and although we saw a lot of jellies, we didn't see any pleurobrachia. The most exciting find of the morning, for me at least, was something that looks like a feather lined worm. I don't know what it is, so I hoping to get a chance to talk to Richard or Maya for some ideas. Amanda was really nice, and unlocked the door to my workspace for me when I got to the office. It's nice to have a workspace were people are 100% willing to help people. I've gotten to help Chris and Wyatt with their traps, visited Natalie's lab, and have interacted a lot with Amanda while in the field. It has only been a few short weeks, but I already have connected with so many people.
I think the most important thing I've been realizing during my stay here at OIMB is that I compare myself a lot to other people. This internship isn't a competition, we're all here for the experience and to learn. Asking questions and asking for help are okay, I'm still learning, there's no reason to expect myself to know everything yet. I'm doing so many things for the first time, and the only person who has criticized my failures is me. My goal for future weeks is to let my fear and self consciousness go, take time to enjoy what I'm learning, and focus more energy on getting work done.
On Saturday we went on the R/V Pluteus. I was looking forward to it all week, and the weather didn't disappoint. While on the vessel, we saw numerous jellyfish, seals, and even a sea lion. It was really cool to be able to point out the differences between seals and sea lions with the other interns and discuss it. We were lucky enough to dredge 3 times while in the Pacific before heading back, the first two times we didn't catch much. The third time, we achieved a trove of sea cucumbers, small crabs, rocks, sand shrimp, and razor clams. The wind took a turn for the worse, and the boat was rocking side-to-side a lot, so we headed back to shore. I was one of the few who ended up getting seasick, but I still enjoyed the short voyage because it was a beautiful day. Sunday was an unofficial personal day. I spent the first part of my day in my room cleaning and tidying. Later, we all walked to Bastendorf Beach, like we did last Sunday. Sadly, there were fewer dogs this trip, but we had 3 UO students join us, and got to know them. Towards the end of the day, I went to the private beach and poked around at more small crabs. Going at low tide was great because there was so much life happening in the pools on the beach.
At 8:30, Chris and I went along with my mentor and other South Slough members to count Western Bog Lilies (Lilium occidentale). The flowers were one of the most intricate and amazing things I've ever seen. It's really sad how endangered they are, but steps have been taken to help them flourish. Some of the trees had been felled to allow for more light to reach the forest floor, and more were marked with red X's. The field work was really helpful because I got to learn how to use the handheld devices, TRIMBLE, that are tracked by satellite. We used them to mark where the lilies were being found. Surprisingly enough, when we visited the control area where no work has been done to sustain the lilies, we found no lilies. Spending time in the forest helped me recharge my internal batteries, even with the damp weather conditions.
Tuesday was a great day because I got to have another try at lab work. Adam and I went to pick up a water collecting device called an ISCO. Inside, the bottles of water are labeled one through 11. With these water samples, I got to run inorganic nutrient samples and chlorophyll tests. The samples get sent to a different lab to have nitrogen and phosphorus testing. To do the inorganic nutrient sampling, I pull water from the bottle into a syringe. Next, I attach a filter to the end of the syringe and push the water through the filter into a small bottle. Any sediment or solids gets left on the filter paper, and the water goes into the freezer. The bottle gets shipped off to a different lab for testing. I have to be careful during chlorophyll test because the chloroplasts will break down when surrounded by light. This means I had to turn off some of the lab lights and keep the water samples either in the cooler or covered by a cup. I got to do total suspended solids (TSS) and bacteria with Ali. The TSS had significantly bigger filter paper for it.
Wednesday had a late start to it because Ali's meeting was canceled. I spent the day continuing chlorophyll testing and getting ready for Thursday's journey. The most exciting part for me was finishing my master excel sheet with some of the data for my project. My Excel sheet has all the water temperatures and dates the temperatures were taken at for sites A and C. Along with other data, I will be answering questions like "How does South Slough's estuary compare to Coo Bay's?" and "What are some likely factors that play into the decline of eelgrass beds at South Slough?", which is what my project is based around. I am using 2016 data in my Excel file but will look at other years as well. Ali sent an email to an OSU student for her estuary data, so I can incorporate it into my project as well. After work, I got to listen to Dr. Deborah Bird from UCLA speak about how skull morphology affects olfactory reception. Your olfaction reception is what gives you your sense of smell. Dr. Bird looked at numerous mammals and has done scans on numerous skulls to observe their cribriform plate, which is a perforated bone (a bone with lots of little holes in it) in the nose of many mammals. I learned the most amazing thing, dolphins have lost all but 12 olfactory receptor genes, and have lost their sense of smell.
Thursday had an early start to it because Ali, Amanda, and I took a boat to the Collver eelgrass sampling site. After looking at the old photos of how eelgrass used to flourish, and seeing what they look like now, felt a little like whiplash. Even though there are some dense patches of eelgrass at Collver, the scene is nowhere near as green or dense. Ali taught me how to distinguish flowering eelgrass from the rest of the eelgrass, and also how to calculate percent coverage and density of eelgrass. If you noticed my picture behind my name, the middle blade of grass is eelgrass with seeds. We were surrounded by different varieties of crabs, but the hundreds of tiny Dungeness Crabs were my favorite. I had never seen so many crabs in one place before. A couple tried to attack our measuring tape with their tiny claws, which was pretty cute to watch. Getting back into the boat after the sampling was the hard part. I felt like a seal trying to get on a beach, flopping around awkwardly before getting a firm seat. When we returned to OIMB, we washed our boots, waders, and the boat. Then Ali and I uploaded the pictures and data. Even though we were all tired, it was an amazing day, and so beautiful. I wouldn't trade these experiences for anything.
I got the day off on Friday, so I decided to help Chris with his Green Crab trapping. European Green Crabs are an invasive species here in Oregon, and Chris is doing his summer experiment over them. I pulled my waders back out from yesterday and headed out with him and his mentor, Bree. If you've ever seen "Neverending Story", picture the scene where Atreyu gets stuck in the Swamp of Sadness. That's pretty much what I looked like when we hit the mud in the estuary. Chris and Bree were really great though and helped me get free, no Luck Dragon needed. The weather cooperated nicely, we got sunlight and a nice breeze while we carried the trapping equipment to different sites. I learned how to establish Green Crabs from other crabs by the 5 teeth on their carapace that starts at their eye. Despite their name, not all European Green Crabs are green, their color ranges from red to yellow to green, depending on how recently the crab has molted. Even with my constant mud-sinking, I enjoyed myself immensely, and highly recommend helping stop European Green Crab's invasion into Oregon.
Movie night is tonight, and we're going to watch Princess Mononoke. This weekend we get to go camping and tidepooling, and I can barely contain my excitement. I feel closer to my fellow interns, and I can't wait to see where next week's adventures take us.