Sunday, February 18, 2018

Porteau Cove 11/02/2018

It was a perfect day for a scooter dive at Porteau Cove!

John Campbell, Vlad Chernavsky, Nick Bowman and myself planned for a 90 minute scooter out past the Nakaya and along the wall with an average depth of 21 meters and oxygen deco at the end. It was a bit chilly for sure; my dive computer logged 8 degrees Celsius.

We saw a lot! The highlight for me was a dinner-plate sized sunflower star (Pycnopodia helianthoides). I submitted this sighting to the sea star wasting tracker at the University of California. The Vancouver Aquarium had been tracking this, but had passed it off to the US university to help consolidate tracking efforts. It was good to see a healthy specimen. I certainly had not seen one in the Vancouver area for over 2 years.

The next excellent wildlife sighting was a large stubby squid guarding its eggs. I would say it was as big as my fist, and probably the largest stubby squid I had ever seen.

The next fun thing was the wheel of a sports car. Vlad took a GPS reading of it so we could plot its location on a map.

Another strange man-made object was a laptop bag. We had actually come across a laptop on a previous dive, so it might have been related. But it was hard to say. Nick looked inside the bag, but there was nothing inside (no gangster money unfortunately!)

John Campbell spotted a rusting metal object nearby to the bag, and swore it looked like a rifle. I wasn't so sure, but maybe.

Finally, I did some rockfish counting for the Vancouver Aquarium Rockfish Abundance Survey, counted 3 lingcod egg masses for the Lingcod Egg Mass Survey, and spotted a nice grunt sculpin.

All in all, a great day of diving!

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