Leg one of our Southwest Pacific marine expedition is over already! It went so fast for all of us. We’re currently in Suva, Fiji preparing the ship for the next leg of the expedition and welcoming new researchers from the Australian Museum, Massey University and Conservation International.
The next leg will take us to the remote Lau Islands, Minerva, Ata Island and then on to Raoul Island in the Kermadecs before we head back to Tauranga in early September.
We've reviewed our work on the expedition so far and found that the invertebrate team has collected 350 groups, a touch ahead of the fishes team who have collected 339 groups. This is just the number of groups, and there can be a range of species within each group. So it is proving a very busy but worthwhile expedition in terms of growing our Museum collections and, ultimately, our understanding of the marine life in the Southwest Pacific.
From what we have seen so far, a picture is emerging about one of the most important factors that impacts on the marine life in the different areas we have visited.
I did a short interview with the Sir Peter Blake Trust ambassadors after our final dive on the first leg so you can hear more about what we’ve observed and see more of the incredible footage that has been captured during the expedition.
Post by: Tom Trnski
Ever since Tom Trnski learnt to snorkel he has had an abiding interest in the life-forms found in our blue backyard and has lead a number of research expeditions to remote islands off the coast of New Zealand and throughout the Pacific. He currently heads the Auckland Museum's Natural Sciences team whose main activities are collection management, collection development, research, and exhibitions and public programmes relating to our collecting areas of botany, entomology, geology, land vertebrates, marine biology and palaeontology.