BVI Day 5


Day 5,
 Today was another great day on beautiful Virgin Gorda. My day started at 6:20am yet again, but today was Plum’s house to prepare breakfast. All we had to do was set out the muffins, honey buns, fruit and cereal that were provided to us by Casey. I decided to be creative and formed the cereal boxes in such a way that they formed plum, to show our cabin pride. Breakfast was satisfying and definitely the best breakfast of any of the cabins. Soon after breakfast, everyone left and we all loaded up onto our respective boats. On the way to our first dive site a great tragedy occurred. Sadly, my Virginia Cavalier hat took a fall and was swept away into the ocean. Right now it is probably floating in the Caribbean, enjoying the beautiful sights and soaking up the sun. It was a great hat and one that will be missed. R.I.P Virginia Hat , you might be gone, but you will never be forgotten. Ok, back to the blog. Our two dives were project dives, and they went by really well. The first dive was at Bronco Billy, and it was a cool dive with a lot of color and tons of juvenile fish. Our project went by smoothly and we saw 10 parrot fish and there was around 60% algae coral. On the way back, the current was super strong and it was exhausting traversing the underwater environment, but after expending 1200psi of air we made it back with just enough air. Our second dive site was at the Coral Gardens. The project went by smoothly yet again, but this time we saw upwards of thirty parrot fish and 30-40% algae cover. This was very good data and helped our project out a lot. On the way back from our project site, we encountered two gigantic lobsters that looked prehistoric and probably could have fed a whole family. The coolest thing we saw though was a Hawksbill Sea Turtle. It was feasting on some algae on the reef, when we came across it, once it noticed us it swam around us and put on a show. It was a great experience and one that will definitely stand out when I look back on this trip. After finishing our second dive, we headed back to the yacht harbor and exchanged tanks, and then headed out for lunch. For lunch, I engulfed two delicious PB&J’s crafted by yours truly. Lunch was definitely a high point in my day. After lunch, we went to collect data on the Staghorn coral nurseries. I got paired with Garrett, and we collected data from tree #6. The data we collected were number of points on the coral and the lengths across on each coral. This process was very cool because while diving this week I have seen plenty of Staghorn coral heads all over the dive sites, but to get the chance to see how they grow and how small they start from was a very amazing experience. After this dive, everyone headed back to the cabins and then to write blogs and work on their projects. Overall, my project is going really well and the data we are collecting is giving us new insight into the correlation between algae and parrotfish. Dinner tonight was spaghetti and meatballs, and after a bunch of guys including myself took part in a heated game of ultimate frisbee. My team lost but it was a fun way to blow off some steam and let loose. That was our day and now I’m writing my blog about to head up to my cabin and go to bead. Tomorrow is our last two dives and it should be a lot of fun. We get to dive the Rhone, which is a sunken ship from the 1800’s. This dive will be the deepest I’ve done and I’m looking forward to learning about the history and seeing the ancient relic up close and personal. Today was a great day. R.IP. to my Virginia hat and I’ll check back in tomorrow.

-Jake Hubbell