Searching the reef of Dairy Bull
It was an early start today, I woke up around 7:30am to eat breakfast and hurry down to the dock to go diving. The destination was Dairy Bull, a reef bottom just a small ways east on the ocean side from the Marine Lab. I, my professors as well as a few of my class mates wanted to take the journey so we could do work on our projects while experiencing another great Jamaica diving spot. The ride out was as calm as can be since the wind had died down substantially from the day before. When we reached Dairy Bull we put on our equipment and jumped in. Although it was shallower and only a small ways from the last diving spot at the fore reef in front of the Marine Lab, I couldn't believe how many new things there were to see. My partner, Kasey and I swam around looking for barrel sponges that we could use in our project to put in our fish tank. We want to see if there is a particular species of sponge that Sponge Brittle Stars prefer in the wild so collecting these specimens was very important for our research.
Gathering sponge samples.
Even though we were "working" it was still a fun and exciting experience. The trip was only about
30min since my ability to regulate my breathing is not up to par. It seems God had seen fit to give me a pair of iron lungs so I could maximize oxygen intake on land, it doesn't quite work if I'm suppose to conserve air underwater. Eventually the rest of the crew mad it back to the boat and we headed back for lunch. As soon as lunch was over a group of us took another trip back to the boat but this time we went to the fore reef in front of the Lab. Me and my partners mission was to find as many Sponge Brittle Stars as possible for our project, an easier task said than done. The area we were searching in had very little barrel sponges which is where most if not all the stars like to hide. After 45 minutes (did much better this time!) we had to return to the boat empty handed. It was a bit discouraging but there is still hope that we will be successful tomorrow when we dive Rio Bueno. In the mean time, I'm focusing on getting the tank set up and getting some sun.