lørdag 14. august 2010

Terrestrial Arctic Biology-cruise Part 1

Okay, so I`m back in Longyearbyen after an amazing field cruise around Svalbard to collect samples at different sites =) I´ve had a hectic week after coming back from the cruise, working with all the samples and our projects, but now I finally got some time to update my blog =) Since I´ve got at least 1000 pictures from the cruise, I decided to write about the cruise in smaller parts =)

So our first day of the cruise we had to get all our luggage and equipment on board, which of course took some time! But day nr. 1 was only a traveling day, because we went all the way form Longyearbyen to on of the Northernmost parts of Spitsbergen! It was nice to just relax at the boat, have a look around, watch Svalbard go by as we went, play some games and get to know each other =) On our way out we could see Grumant, Colesbukta, Barentsburg and Kapp Linnè =)
I think it is hilarious that I got a room in a barrack, standing on deck! It wasn`t that much noise from the engine there, but the waves had a much bigger impact so far up on the boat! Hehe, but at least me and my room-mates could have some fresh Arctic air form an open window once in a while =)

Our first location on land was Moselbukta. This place had very little vegetation, but we still found some reindeer here! And tracks form a polar bear! We have been collecting different samples for different projects, some have been working with insects, plants, mychorizza (root-fungi of plants), parasites in reindeers, and freshwater communities. I´m on the plant group, so we have been trying to find some Bistorta vivipara during the cruise, and are going to investigate proportion of clonal or sexual reproduction in this plant along the altitude of Svalbard.

And we were so lucky with the weather! It was sun and blue sky, hardly any wind, not what you expect of the high Arctic! Walking around in such conditions felt like a summer-hike =) Hehe, it felt even more like summer when we were standing by a small like trying to catch Lepidurus arcticus (a living fossil, often called sea-monkey=)!

After a great day outside we had tog et back to our boat by a zodiac or polar circle boat! When we came back from the boat, the hot tub on deck was filled with warm water! How awesome is that, sitting in a hot tub on a boat in the Arctic!

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