Finished my data collection!

I’m so excited! Yesterday I finally finished my data collection. Now I have about 3 hours of video to watch and analyze. This week I’ve been working on collecting my sonar and video data. We don’t have a super fancy sonar depth finder that will record data so I recorded the sonar data with a video recorder and simultaneously recorded underwater video of each transect confirming the vegetation shown on the sonar. The underwater video will also show species diversity and allow us to identify some of the species of submerged aquatic vegetation. At least I have an extra week for analysis! Below is a picture of my recording set up on the boat and an underwater photo of some flowering rush with aquatic epiphytic algae.

Nature on the 4th

I spent my afternoon on the 4th fishing and on our way to the boat launch we got to see 2 Trumpeter Swans with a couple baby swans. It was funny watching their red bands slink their way back down their neck after they stuck their tails in the air diving down for some grub.

Data Collection

I’m finally collecting data!! I feel as though I’ve been fighting the weather and it’s been slightly discouraging but that’s just how field work goes sometimes. I finished one and a half transects out of three that I’m taking samples from. I have a love/hate relationship with point-intercept sampling only because we would pass over dense sections of vegetation, as seen above on the sonar, and it wouldn’t be within our sample sections, so I feel like I’m missing out on some data. It’s a good thing I’m doing a methods comparison as a part of my work. The picture on the right is of some filamentous algae collected in a rake sample. The rake survey method is one of my methods I’ll be using along with a hydroacoustic survey and a visual observation survey to estimate the percent ground cover of submerged aquatic vegetation in East Bay of Flathead Lake.

And the Field Work has Begun..

It’s been nice getting to do field work on Flathead Lake! The view of the Mission Mountains and the endless lake make for some nice office scenery. I’ve just returned from doing some trial runs on my methods and am really excited to now be on the computer for awhile tweaking some things. Here’s a picture of some submerged aquatic vegetation collected today using the rake method. IMG_4009

Bear Training

This week has flown by, we all met and got started right away. It’s been great getting to meet everyone and to also finally find out what we would be doing all summer. My favorite moment this week was during our bear training when Anthony starred as our bear for our bear spray practice. EKeksi_Wk1_Photo1