Expedition

Expedition Highlights

  • In-depth exploration of dozens of ‘neighborhoods of the sea.’
  • Documentation of human footprints on the sea
  • Use of underwater, surface and aerial cameras and drones will capture human presence along the route to be used by both researchers and students
  • Collaboration with scientists and naturalists in each port will help validate interconnectedness of each neighborhood and how its dwellers need and sustain each other
  • Recording of marine life in their habitats at a scale and resolution that has never been captured before

Specific Areas of Focus:

  • Collection of first ever acoustic benchmarks for marine mammals in the rapidly changing Arctic
  • Exploration of dead zones that exist due to human activities on land
  • Highlighting of protection efforts for the giant Manta Ray in Peru
  • Exploration of the migration pattern of birds from Tierra Del Fuego to the Arctic
  • Exploration of the interactions among whales, fish, seabirds and plankton in the Stellwagen Marine Sanctuary, and its sister sanctuaries in the Dominican and French Antilles

Research Agenda:

Sampling Ocean Plastics – Establishing a Nano & Micro  Plastic Baseline: S/V Ocean Watch crew will conduct an Ocean Plastic Survey of marine debris, floating plastics and the increasingly ubiquitous micro-particles of undigestible plastics. The sampling protocol will be designed to be compatible with other international efforts. This will allow a map of the presence of plastics from original  Around the Americas voyage to be updated and will support and encourage clean-up and recovery action.

Argo Floats & Ocean Drifters -Supplementing and  Disseminating Existing Data Monitors: As a “ship of opportunity” S/V Ocean Watch will participate in the ongoing NOAA Argo Program. Scientists and crew will track, visit, activate and deploy Argo Floats  in the existing program to maintain and fill out the existing Argo map. Information received from these floats and other student-launched floating “mini-boats” and “ocean drifters” will allow scientists, students and researchers across the  Americas to dynamically track ocean data (including: temperature, salinity,  dissolved Oxygen, pH).

Sampling eDNA – Establishing a Baseline  Environmental DNA, Around the Americas: Project Ocean Watch will follow research protocols established by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) to build a catalogue of the marine  biodiversity around the Americas. The scientists and crew of S/V Ocean Watch will freeze filter samples of ocean water taken at depth and time at each degree of  latitude in each direction from Pole-to-Pole creating a live record of sea life, ranging from microbe to whale. Additionally, a Quantitative Phytoplankton Slide of each sample will be prepared for sharing in digital format and preserved for  physical examination.

Expedition Route + Timeline

Fall 2020 – Spring 2023

AUDIENCE REACH

Project Ocean Watch offers unprecedented opportunities for storytelling, leveraging S/V Ocean  Watch as a multi-lingual content-generatingplatform.

Our Storytellers:
Highly-credentialed writers, photographers, videographers will document,
educate, create and share stories and imagery on various legs of the
expedition.

OurPlatforms:
Content will be shared via Project Ocean Watch’s digital learning platform,
through  communication channels including social media, real time blogs and
vlogs, traditional media, partner organization networks and events in each port
along the expedition.

Project Ocean Watch will reach and engage the following audiences:
Powerful Strategic Partner Networks including:
Google Earth Outreach who will share our content with their community:

  • Social Outreach:                                                         1.5 million
  • Google Maps:                                                               10 million
  • Google G-Suite Users                                              60 million+
  • Google Apps for Education:                                  2.5 million
  • Google G-Suite/ Apps for Ed Newsletter:    150,000
  • Google Global Educator Groups:                       3,000 worldwide

In addition:

  • Millions of K-12 students, their teachers and parents around The Americas and world
  • Thousands of graduate students studying oceanography and marine biology who will act as mentors to younger students
  • Ocean enthusiasts, conservationists and Explorer’sClubs
  • Birders, an estimated 47 million in the US alone will take interest in the expedition’s trackingof migratory patterns of seabirds and shorebirds
  • Millions of people who use VR and AR experiences to become virtual crew members
  • Consumers that visit the ship/port activities, or go online to learn aboutthe expedition

Why children? Children are the key to reaching—and teaching—adults.

  • Children have a higher level of awareness of ocean-related issues, and a greater propensity to modify their behaviors and engage in advocacy thanadults
  • Research confirms that adults look to young people for guidance on environmental issues. And while adults may remain the ‘decision-makers,’ children are increasingly becoming the ‘opinion- makers’
  • The next generation cannot wait until they are adults to begin the work protecting ourplanet

MORE TO COME

Stay in touch and join the action as we announce opportunities in ports along the way to come aboard and meet the Ocean Watch crew. As schedules permit, Captain Karl Kruger, through Kruger Escapes, will offer a limited number of skippered charters on R/V Ocean Watch for an up close and personal view of what we are experiencing and seeing – a truly unique opportunity to immerse yourself in this journey

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