By Eldridge Wisely:
In October and November of 2016, I spent 21 days aboard the Quino El Guardian with a wonderful group of marine scientists from Mexico. I helped collect data using traditional transect methods, and I collected water and sediment samples for eDNA analysis. eDNA means environmental DNA which is to say, any DNA which can be collected from environmental samples (soil, water, air) without first targeting or culturing any organisms. I worked from dawn to 11 PM every day, met some amazing scientists doing really cool research, and had a fantastic live-aboard dive trip experience. I have always loved field work, but this was my first official marine field work, and I had the best time of my life.
I collected and filtered 171 samples of water and sediment, for a combined total of 119 liters of environmental samples from all over the Gulf of California covering 5.7 degrees of latitude and 5.1 degrees of longitude and 22 degrees Fahrenheit of water temperature.
Now it’s time for the DNA extractions!