Day 3: Project Lightsaber Sherer


After a much needed night of sleep, Jack, Xander, and I went for a quick morning run. Along our short run, we saw Glen driving to the Baths to deliver ice, and we went back to go to breakfast. Breakfast was once again a hardy bowl of fruit loops without milk and a biscuit with apple juice from South Africa (apparently with 440 KJ of energy). We then left for the docks and I boarded the Sea Monkey to our first dive site, a quaint little island with a reef about 40 feet under. The first dive was to test our research projects. In my team’s project, we are going to test if fish prefer a green or blue light underwater (which we will test late tonight and tomorrow) so in order to prepare for this at night, we decided to set up our glow stick attached to the light underwater. We submerged, and despite my somewhat clogged ear, we where able to comfortably submerge and drop our glow stick contraption. Not much to any of our surprise, the glow stick floated and was held down by the weight of the weight. Our dive instructor Jeff then took us on a trip through the reef. We saw a lot of blue tang (even the yellow juveniles), multiple schools of basslets above beautiful sprawling coral, a giant grouper, and multiple flounders. During this dive, my buddy Jack and I got separated, so I went off to look for him. I soon found him after I went back to the group and found out that he was still there. Jeff then found a juvenile lionfish and shot it with his speargun, thus effectively obliterating it. We then went back to the boat and saw that Suarez was running on empty since the safety stop. After that, we went to Jesuit reef to clean coral trees. Whilst cleaning, I cleaned off the algae and stinging hydroids. Much to my dismay, some of the hydroids somehow got up my swim trunks, and you guessed it, they stung me. While swimming with stings is not fun, diving Jesuit Reef was fun. We saw giant bar jacks under the boat, multiple schools of fish, and even a pointy nose puffer. We then got out and went to the next site, a bay closed to a salt pond after eating an amazing ham and cheese sandwich. We learned about how salt ponds protect the ocean from sediments and pollution. We then snorkeled from the boat to the salt pond to observe it. Gaz one again almost got us the extended tour (we almost got lost again), but we easily found the salt pond. We even got to eat the salt, which was saltier than any other salt I’ve had. We then went back to the boat, and went back to our hotel. My group and I then went back to the baths to set up the experiment for late tonight. We swam out and placed the glow sticks on opposite sides of the reef/rock, and swam back to shore to our house. At our house, I began typing this very blog, and we saw that a chicken had managed to climb our stairs. We went to see it, and it jumped right off the patio! After that, we went to dinner and began our project. Jack and I swam out to the blue glow stick, and Suarez and Xander swam out to the green one. We all broke it and started our ten minute timer. We noticed that the blue light attracted more fish, but they were usually the really small ones, such as basslets. The green light attracted the bigger fish and crustaceans, but they had around 4 fewer fish than the blue. Tomorrow we will add another glow stick to each light and switch the locations to see if our results were only because of the location. On a side note, I feel a lot more comfortable diving then yesterday. I feel like I have achieved nuetral buyoancy, and I feel more streamlined (this probably is because I found the correct weight). Tomorrow I look forward to completing our experiment and diving even more!