Hi Ms. Davenport,

I really enjoyed the "Live event from IPY".  What is the bottom sediment like in that part of the Bering Sea?  Why do you think you are getting some poor core samples?  What kinds of benthic organism composition do you get in the core samples?


Robert Harris 

Emily Davenport

Hi Robert!  Thanks for joining us for the IPY event!   
The sediment in the Bering Sea varies from area to area.  As we get closer to the edge of the continental shelf it gets muddier.  Along the 70m isobath that we just finished with yesterday (pretty much S to N along the middle of the continental shelf) the sediments were often very sandy.  A lot of sand or gravel or anything like that makes a bad core, because it won't stay in the core tube- it's not "sticky" enough to hold together.  We like getting mud the best, because it makes a really great core.  Second best is a mix of some sand and mud- more mud than sand is best.
As far as the animals that we've found- there are lots of worms, like polychaetes, then there are clams and lots of brittle stars.  Sometimes an unlucky animal gets caught in our core- we caught a long orange fish a few days ago (guesses are it's some sort of gunnel).  Mainly we see a lot of organisms that burrow or build tubes in the sediment, as well as some that crawl along the top.  

Robert Harris

Hi Emily,Some gunnels make a tunnel into the bottom for a home.  How unlucky, that fish was!  Do you have any pictures of the polychate (many bristle) worms?  Polychate worms are really cool!  Also could you explain how the multicorer works?  I am on my way back into the classroom on Monday. 
Good weather!

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