Location: Great Harbour Peter, Peter Island, BVIs
After breakfast, the students enlightened everyone with their Oceanography Research Project presentations. They have been working on these projects all trip, and it was interesting to hear what they’d found. Annie, Sarah, and Maggie had been investigating the reformation capabilities of sponges. Interestingly one species had shown some signs of reformation after grating. Will and Carter looked at ocean salinity and temperature variations with depth and found interesting results in Barbuda, perhaps due to the shallow sandbanks there. Will and Reed looked at the reaction times of feather duster worms and discovered that the larger the worm, the longer it took to come back out of its hole. Al, Steve, Mark, and Reese had been studying the aggressive behavior of moray eels and damselfish. They had some great photos of Moray checking out their reflection in the hand mirror they had used to provoke responses. These projects are a great opportunity for students to explore an interest more and work on experimental design and methodology. Towards the end of these presentations, a weird sound was heard through the hull, bubbles the rescue divers sprang into action, immediately checking for Dan and Kevin, the usual rescue scenario victims, on the discovery of missing tanks action a rescue began! This scenario was a little different and perhaps unexpected than the three previous ones, panicked divers instead of unconscious divers. As they brought Dan and Kevin safely to the surface, there was a flurry of activity as they calmed the panicked divers. Once debriefed on the rescue, it was time for the Oceanography final exam, followed by lunch. After lunch was the final test of the trip – the Rescue Diver Exam, which everyone passed with flying colors. The afternoon was then free. Some tried out windsurfing while others snorkeled at the beach. Following dinner, we headed out to dive the Fearless, a wooded wreck just off Peter Island. As the sunset, we descended to a depth of 80ft and were greeted by a rather large barracuda!