Navigation and environmental data from R/V Weatherbird II for the West Florida Shelf: USGS Cruise 11BHM03
The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting a study on the effects of climate change on ocean acidification within the Gulf of Mexico; dealing specifically with the effect of ocean acidification on marine organisms and habitats. To investigate this, the USGS participated in two cruises in the West Florida Shelf and northern Gulf of Mexico regions aboard the R/V Weatherbird II, a ship of opportunity lead by Dr. Kendra Daly, of the University of South Florida (USF). The cruises occurred September 20 - 28 and November 2 - 4, 2011. Both left from and returned to Saint Petersburg, Florida, but followed different routes (see Trackline). On both cruises the USGS collected data pertaining to pH, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), and total alkalinity in discrete samples. Discrete surface samples were taken during transit approximatly hourly on both cruises, 95 in September were collected over a span of 2127 km, and 7 over a trackline of 732 km line on the November cruise. Along with the surface samples, another set of samples were taken at various depths at stations; 27 in September at four stations and 15 in November at five stations. In addition to the discrete samples flow-through data was also collected on both cruises in a variety of forms. Surface CTD data was collected every five minutes which includes temperature, salinity, and pH. In addition, two more flow-through instruments were setup on both cruises that recorded pH and CO2 every 15 minutes. Corroborating the USGS data is the vertical CTD profiles collected by USF, using the following sensors: CTD, oxygen, chlorophyll fluorescence, optical backscatter, and transmissometer. Additionally, discrete depth samples for nutrients, chlorophyll, and particulate organic carbon/nitrogen were collected.
The USGS Saint Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center (SPCMSC) - St. Petersburg, FL, assigns a unique identifier to each cruise or field activity. For example, 11BHM03 tells us the data were collected in 2011 for Benthic Habitat Mapping and the data were collected during the fthird field activity for that project in that calendar year. Refer to http://walrus.wr.usgs.gov/infobank/programs/html/definition/activity.html
for a detailed description of the method used to assign the cruise ID.