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Lake Merritt OpenROV Reunion 2018

July 4 2018

We have been invited to have a reunion of students who participated in OpenROV at Lake Merritt with OpenRov. It's up to the students to define the mission and take it from here!

July 4 2018


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Preparation Stage

Major thanks to Adrian Cotter for sharing his expertise and his OpenROV with us. The video really shows the potential for ROV's to show the underwater community. I made a "log" for Adrian's video so that we can begin to record species and habitat observations, and easily locate them in the 14 minute tape. I look forward to the next dive. Thanks to everyone who came out. We can use this experience to plan for a grand reunion maybe this fall. Photos from August 12th here:

DIVE LOG –August 12th 2018 - Adrian’s OpenROV

TIME Total time is 14 min

0:00 Tube worms (Ficopomatus emigmaticus) and yellow sponge with long tubes (oscules) extended(Halichondria bowerbanki). Beige brushy stuff is bryozoans and mud tubes from polychaete worms.

0:21 Sea anemones with tentacles extended – 2 light strips on barrel identifies as Diadumene lineata. Form with orange strips also seen elsewhere.

1:02 ROV heads under the dock. Mussels and sponges.

1:26-1:31 A crab on a pillar. Shape and position suggest green shore crab (Hemigrapsus oregonensis).

2:30 Close-up of mussels and anemones, brushy bryozoans. A lot of “marine snow.”

3:17 break, then shifts to travel over yellowish-beige seaweed (bleached from red seaweed?). Color pinkish-reddish.

3:44 Open water

4:00 Fish grazing on vertical pole covered with organisms. Small fish laterally flattened. Condensation in camera chamber a problem.

5:35 A clump of green-colored seaweed to left (Codium fragile). Bottom is soft. Red encrusting stuff on Codium (Star tunicate or Botrylloides schlosseri?).

6:17 Ficopomatus reef red stuff = Star tunicate; beige brushy stuff.

9:13 Long stretch of open water with weed-covered bottom.

11:05 Shift to dense mussels encrusted with white/beige stuff on upper surface usually; orange tunicate (Star?)

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Sunday, August 12th, we had a great little expedition. Lake Merritt Observatory's first. Katie Noonan organized the day bringing out her usual array of sampling equipment. Adrian Cotter set up the OpenROV (named RV Grebe, RV for research vessel :-) and after a little bit of worry and a couple of restarts, had it in the water and exploring for the next hour and a half.

Raven, Davonte, and Angela were out to help: having a go at the ROV controls, helping with various sampling efforts, checking out what the ROV dragged up (at one point the tether brought up some seaweed, which we scooped up and poked around to see what might be living there), and Raven filled out our Lake Merritt Observatory whiteboard for the day (see photos).

We had some learnings:

  • an umbrella or some sort of sun blocker would come in handy
  • turn off the HUD when you record!

We still have to take some time to go through the video and catalog all that's on there: anemones, mussels, various little fish, seaweeds, tunicates, a crab hanging from the pylon, and more!

We're looking forward to exploring some different parts of the lake, and figuring out how best to use the ROV.

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Expedition Background

Students who participated in the OpenROV program will collaborate to design an expedition. Stay tuned.

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