Eelgrass Expedition Reflections

Written by Riley Seaborn

Hello! My name is Riley Seaborn and I am a CHS future 10th grader working with the CSCR Eelgrass group over this summer. As you may have heard from others within the eelgrass group, throughout our expeditions we have come to realize the shortage of eelgrass within the Cohasset Harbor during this summer. This has been worrying to us as a group and this shortage has interfered with our projects and work throughout the productive summer. However, there is hope! Today along with the junior researchers, we have located patches of eelgrass with at least 50% density inside “Nick’s Cove”. This is incredible news to us researchers because this means some of this eelgrass may be harvestable and able to grow in tanks for further research. We hope to find more healthy patches during our time this summer!

Today during our expedition Charlie Whinnery and Juliet Stewart came up with the procedure to find the most effective way to study eelgrass. Led by Finn Yemini, Malone Yemini explored areas around the dingy and informed researchers on the dingy of her findings and observations. This was logged within the program “ArcGIS” which entered all the data and marked a spot on the map where eelgrass was found. Other swimmers and divers, Nick Garrity, Charlie Whinnery and Riley Seaborn, explored the depths and observed the eelgrass for any mobile organisms or diseases. Owen Gurtz shot and filmed all the data giving us material to further observe the depths. When researchers were interviewed about today’s expedition here is what they said:

“Tell me about the expedition today.”

“Well I was in the dingy interviewing people in the water with the app (ArcGIS).” – Stephanie Williams (Junior Researcher)

“I thought the seaweed along the way was very interesting…It was interesting to see the different crabs, they seemed like they relied on the eelgrass for food and protection.” – Nick Garrity (Junior Researcher)

“All the eelgrass we found today mostly had wasting disease but we did find some plants without it which is a lot.” – Charlie Whinnery (Varsity Researcher) 

“Did you learn anything new?”

“In some places, Mosey said that it was about 50% coverage but then we went to another location and Finn said that it was almost 75% coverage.” – Stephanie Williams (Junior Researcher)

“Did you see anything you would want to know more about?”

“The seaweed was really interesting, it looked really cool.” – Malone Yemini (Junior Researcher)

“Do you guys have any theories about what might have caused the eelgrass shortage?”

“It could be the green crabs maybe, there was a surge of how many there are.” – Malone Yemini (Junior Researcher)

“The green crabs could have eaten the eelgrass and torn it up.” – Stephanie Williams (Junior Researcher)

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