Monday, June 2, 2014

Kent Island Day 8

I've finally settled upon a new project which will be much simpler than my proposed idea yesterday of setting up settlement plates all around the island and Grand Manan on aquaculture cages. I'll be examining the effect of current on the biodiversity and growth rate of native and invasive fouling communities. To accomplish this, I'll be placing five plates in strategic places around Kent Island and grand Manan. Two plates will be placed between rock ledges which are parallel to the direction of tide between Hay and Kent Islands which funnel a large quantity of the incoming tide into a small space. This will have the effect of creating a high flow area. One plate will be placed in a large tepid pool on West beach and another in a deep pool off the southern end of the island to function as low current areas. Finally, a single plate will be placed in a almost completely enclosed harbor area in Seal Cove to function as a no-current control group. I will post pictures as I make the plates in the days to come.

Yesterday we did little work, being Sunday, so in addition to taking my first shower so far, we took a little adventure to Sheep Island, one of the other islands in the Three Island group that includes Kent and Hay islands. Unlike the other two islands, here there are no trees, only sun-baked rock and scraggly grasses and raspberry bushes. There is a solitary warden hut on the island that looks like it was just left a week ago, but apparently has been sitting empty since the College acquired the island around 10-15 years ago. Otherwise, the only sign of life is the enormous quantity of Herring Gulls nesting here. The highlight of the trip was the sudden discovery of a recently-dead juvenile Humpback Whale on the western side of the island. While obviously a sad sight, it was also the closest most of us had ever been to a whale living or dead, and so despite it's small size of 8 meters, was quite extraordinary.

 Below are some pictures which some people may find disturbing of the whale, in addition to general KI shots. Please use discretion.

Ben desperately searches for Guillemots while a Gull watches disapprovingly

Dead juvenile Humpback Whale. Didn't smell too bad until you got right up to it.


  1. Looking forward to more photos Drew. Way to overcome "suffering through science".

  2. It's been great reading about Kent Island, Drew. It must've been nice to have some time to explore, but also unexpected to stumble upon that whale.