#2 Lubec Arrival By Land And By Sea

The Whale House in Lubec, Maine, is filling up with researchers arriving by land and by sea. The season began in late July with packing up the right whale office at the Aquarium. A couple of team members arrived in Lubec early to open up and clean up our field research station after a long winter. On July 30th, Amy and Bill brought the research vessel, Nereid, along the coast from Bass Harbor on Mount Desert Island, it's about a six-hour steam to Lubec. The R/V Nereid is as old as the right whale project. It is maintained during the off season to high standards thanks to the dependable team at James H. Rich Boat Yard (Bernard, ME). The vessel usually runs for 12 - 14 or more hours each survey day and must be reliable and safe for the unpredictable waters of the Bay of Fundy.

The team spent Sunday, August 1st, setting up the field office and installing the necessary safety gear and disentanglement gear on the Nereid. Moe, the Project's senior scientist, called the team together for a brief informational meeting and assignment of tasks for the day. Veteran researchers Monica, Jess, Amy and Bill were introduced to Marianna and Zach who are new to the Right Whale Research Project. The morning was spent working on the office, setting up computers, VHS radios, printers and checking camera gear, and sampling equipment. After lunch the team met at the research vessel and were briefed on safety procedures. New member Jenny arrived just in time for the safety talk. Then the team took a short trip to Eastport to fuel the Nereid for the next day on the water.

Claudia, returning for another season, cooked up a quick meal of lentils and rice spiced up just right. The team eats dinner every evening at a large table together in the kitchen, usually with candle light and always with good conversation. The evening was spent completing all of the work to be ready for the survey the next day. It was a great day of preparation and anticipation was high for the first day out on the water.


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