Behind the scenes
Midwater ecology lab at sea in Monterey Bay
Last week, MBARI’s Midwater Ecology Group, led by Bruce Robison, embarked on an eight-day expedition aboard the R/V Western Flyer to conduct research in Monterey Bay. The lab will use a midwater toolsled, equipped with sampling chambers and an underwater “vacuum cleaner,” to collect animals in the deep sea. The toolsled is attached to the bottom of the remotely operated vehicle (ROV) Doc Ricketts. In this photo, ROV Pilot Randy Prickett operates the crane while (from left to right) Mark Talkovic, Bryan Schaefer, and Ben Erwin align the ROV as it is lowered onto the midwater toolsled in preparation for the expedition.