Searching for pockmarks

Today we arrived to the middle of the North Sea. We woke up to some some lousy weather; cold, rain and windy. Today feels more like winter in stark contrast to yesterday  where we had a summerday. It‘s incredible how the weather can change so fast out here,  but I guess we are right in … Read more

Another Wednesday exploring the great North Sea

Another great day, made even better by sunny weather that reminded us that it’s actually summertime. It was honestly a gift that we all thoroughly appreciated and enjoyed. But the horizon looked a bit different today and we weren’t able to get the full impact of its immense beauty because a huge oil platform was … Read more

The search for sea pens

Today we arrived at Devil’s Hole, here there are several muddy trenches and our plan for the day was to look for sea pens using the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV). The weather was on our side, the sea was calm and the currents were weak, perfect for the ROV! In fact, we managed to complete … Read more

A day on the coast

We took advantage of a still-calm sea and filled the air tanks in the inflatables with twice the amount of air and packed some sandwiches with a plan to perform two dives on the coast while the Neptune is out working with the ROV and taking care of some other loose ends. The visibility underwater … Read more

Sunday, the day of rest

Today’s diary comes to you from a guest on board the Neptune, from the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) – an organisation which advises the UK government on conservation matters. Oceana are hosting two members of staff from JNCC on the first leg of the North Sea survey and hopefully the information collected in the … Read more

On a day just like today

Today is more than just the first day of July; I began working at Oceana four years ago, on a day just like today. It’s also the first International Polychaete Day, but we’ll leave that for another entry… Over my years with Oceana I’ve been immensely fortunate to spend a lot of time on board, … Read more

A Great Day

Today was a great day. The weather got steadily better and the waves dropped to nearly calm. We started taking grabs off the Moray Firth coast, finding everything from worms to sea squirts. Deeper grabs produced brittlestars with enormous long arms twisting round in the dishes as photos were taken. The best find of the … Read more

Thanks to those who work behind the scenes

Back on board the Neptune to launch our second research campaign in the waters of the North Sea. There’s rough weather today, so the work we do on board is completely different: material checks, operations tests, meetings and “office work” take up most of our day. However, today I would like to talk about something … Read more

New attraction on board: the ‘Grabator’

We have a very special contraption sailing on board the Neptune. Helena (marine mcientist and expert in morning briefings) has named it the Grabator. It is something like a rustic washing machine that cleans the seabed samples that we take with the grab. Grabator basically consists of a bucket with a set of sieves, a … Read more

Oceana begins exploration of North Sea marine life in waters of five nations

Oceana is launching today its two-month expedition in the North Sea to survey important areas of marine life in the waters of Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, and the United Kingdom, on board the vessel Neptune. The organisation’s second research project in the North Sea is generously funded by the Dutch Postcode Lottery and will … Read more