::imaginative introspection::

Imagine that all life is an illusion. All that exists is this moment. No past, no future, each memory, every plan, a part of the illusion. Life, in a photograph.

Do you like the image of yourself?

Monday, May 26, 2008


This is a Google Earth image of the research station and the part of Moreton Bay that we're exploring here on the island. This morning we went on our daily trudge, looking for new Holothuria to bring back to the wet lab. After we found our three replacements and got them all set up we went back out and surveyed the different environments, sandy offshore, grassy offshore and rocky offshore areas. We scanned two different 25 square meter areas in each environment. Now, this may seem pretty simple, but with the water up to our knees in some areas, you can get pretty tired.

There are a few poisonous critters to look out for too. There's the fortesque, a fish with poisonous spines on its back that will essentially kill the flesh the poison gets to, the rockfish, a fish that looks like a rock, with a poisonous bite that is essentially lethal, and, my personal favorite, the blue ringed octopus. It's venom is a neurotoxin that will paralyze you (dangerous in water,) cause respiratory arrest and then cardiac arrest. There is no antidote, yet, so they're dangerous little things. We spotted one hiding in a hole under an anemone this morning, and the group has seen about six at this point. One group actually caught one, and we have it in a tank in the wet lab (pictures soon!) They're small, about the size of a golf ball, smart and generally stay away from humans, but if you step on them they'll bite, so that's the danger. They're sandy colored, but flash the blue rings when you irritate them.

There are sharks out here, but they mostly stick to the deeper channels, although we may have spotted a Wobbegong (carpet shark) by the dropoff this morning. We have a wobbegong in a tank in the wet lab, they're cool animals, not very dangerous.

We're hoping to get some snorkeling in after lunch today, and there's a shark lecture later this afternoon as well.

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