A Better Understanding of Coral Reef Ecosystems

Pelagic predators such as these barracuda, Sphyraena qenie, are part of the coral reef ecosystem in the U.S. Line Islands (NOAA Photo by Kevin Lino).
A team of scientists have embarked from Hawai'i on a three-month survey of coral reef ecosystems at Johnston Atoll, the U.S. Phoenix Islands, the islands of American Samoa, and the U.S. Line Islands in the tropical Pacific Ocean. The overarching objective is to better understand the coral reef ecosystems of these areas, many of which are seldom explored. The research expedition is part of a regular monitoring program, conducted by the Coral Reef Ecosystem Division (CRED), headquartered in Honolulu, Hawai'i. The expedition is supported by NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program and involves extensive cooperation among NOAA scientists and research partners, including the University of Hawaii Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research (JIMAR), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, San Diego State University, and the Papahānaumaokuākea Marine National Monument.

The research expedition will be carried out from February 27 to May 24, 2012 aboard the NOAA ship Hi'ialakai. Under the leadership of Chief Scientists Dr. Jill Zamzow, Dr. Bernardo Vargas-Angél, and Jamison Gove, a diverse team of researchers will be conducting multidisciplinary coral reef ecosystem surveys, assessing the status of fishes, corals, algae, marine invertebrates, and the oceanographic conditions in which these organisms exist. The scientific data collected during the three-month research expedition will enable informed and effective implementation of ecosystem-based management and conservation strategies for coral reef ecosystems, helping to ensure their protection for generations to come.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Sea Sickness (Ode to my pillow)

Feeling nauseous, dizzy.

Run to bed, as I lay my head on the pillow a warm and fuzzy feeling tells me everything will be alright. The movement of the ship lulls me into sleep and dreams.

Sleep... it does not seem to last more than a couple of hours. I wake up feeling energized.

Walking up the stairs and down the hall towards the dry lab, I feel like a wobbly pin ball bouncing off the walls as I move with the ship being pulled back and forth by gravity.

Sitting in front of a computer makes all my recently accumulated energy dissipate. Before I start feeling too sick again, I run back to the safety of my bunk.

It seems like all of us are only able to half sleep, trying to get used to all the creaking and groaning noises of the ship. I wake again in what seems to last a minute. I look at the watch, it is time for lunch. It is surprising that even with all this movement most of us can still pack in a good sized meal.

Looking out the window of the galley I see blue sky, that very quickly transforms into a large wave and then sky again. I can't watch any longer. I have to go back to my sweet and ever so soft pillow, that will envelop this feeling of nausea into a calm sleep where the waves do not roll and my world is not in constant movement.


  1. Oh that's a nice little ditty. Hope you are feeling better in the morning...

  2. I hope that you find your sea legs soon.

    Ben's Mom
    Cristi's mother-in-law

  3. Tnx! Sea legs have been found (I think by everyone else as well)

  4. I found you! The smoked pork was ono Broke the mouth good. You will love your nuevo gift from su PaPa. LOVED those 1000 steps to get to your front door. NWG survived them too. xoxox lg

  5. woa i did not know that you get sea sick polly! Im glad you found you sea legs tho. I look foreward to more posts from you!