Expedition Journal

January 24, 1996
Croc Hunt Continues

We had an earlier morning today because we had to take pictures with Dr. Ballard before he left to speak in front of the Senate. We had pictures taken with him in front of the dock here at KML.

Before pictures were taken, we asked around and found out what the "green glowy things" we saw on our first night were. They are bioluminescent threadworms. The females glow to attract males. These worms are often seen in the ocean.

We also worked with the GIS (Geographic Information System) team to plot the courses we have been taking in our boats. We can use the computers to see where we went in relation to where we had spotted crocodiles in the past.

We ate lunch before going out hunting again. We hoped to catch a even bigger crocodile than yesterday. We went up the Taylor River to dig up the nest along that creek. We suspected that it had been flooded and the eggs were buried in the bank. We weren't really looking forward to the smell of the rotten eggs again, but we dug anyway. We found out real quickly when we found it. Oh, the stench! Fortunately, we didn't need to dig up the whole nest because we found the information we needed: the nest had flooded and failed. We went up the Taylor River even farther. It was really narrow and we had to avoid the hanging mangrove branches and lots of spider webs. Unfortunately one boat didn't succeed in moving the branches out of it's way. We have to go down early tomorrow to wash the boats.

We also saw a variety of plant and animal life, including vanilla orchids, butterfly orchids (which look like bird nests) red mangroves, ibises (white birds with golden feet), great blue heron, and other birds.

Then we went to Turn Key and ate dinner while watching the sunset. There we saw spoonbills, pelicans and dolphins! After dinner we started our croc hunt. We saw quite a few crocs, but couldn't catch any. We'd get close to the crocs and then they'd go under the water where we couldn't see them. Oh well. The ride home was really smooth; there was no wind and the water was like glass.

The Croc Team:
Emily Hudson
Rebecca Somers
Danielle Nettesheim

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Gene Carl Feldman (gene@seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov) (301) 286-9428
Todd Carlo Viola, JASON Foundation for Education (todd@jason.org)
Revised: 25 Jan 1996