It has been roughly 12 days since I departed on my 4 day cross-country road trip from Indiana to the coast of Oregon. Many sites were seen like Medicine Bow, Winnemucca Mountain, and Crater Lake. Taking the time to see such colossal structures really made me realize how small we are in the vastness of our own country, let alone the planet.
It took 35+ hours to get to Oregon, and I’ve only been here for roughly a week, but I already feel a sense of home here. For the next 9 weeks, to my understanding, I will be working with integrating different pit trap methods for the capture of juvenile Dungeness crabs (Cancer magister) as well as the utility of using underwater video to get quality quantitative data on fish and invertebrate use of US West Coast intertidal estuarine habitats. Working this week with the USDA under my mentors, I have been very fortunate to already be getting out into the field.
This week we drove 60 miles north to Netarts, OR and checked shell bags for colonization by shellfish. We also took water quality in areas that were bare (lacked vegetation) and areas with seagrass present. Closer by (Yaquina Bay), pit traps were set up for the capture of Dungeness crabs to quantify their morphometrics to create more accurate size selection in the future. To our delight, we managed to catch several crabs, along with a few mud shrimp.
There is no doubt that the next 9 weeks will pass by quickly, a lot will be learned and a lot of great memories are to be made. With that I hope you continue to enjoy my blogging as the weeks go by. I’m lucky to call this beautiful city and state my home for the summer. Follow me on here or via twitter @Prechtelguy93