Michelle Rau

2014 Mouth of the Columbia River Deep Water Site and Shallow Water Site Monitoring Series, Part 3 of 4: Epifaunal Trawls

Part 3 of our Oregon adventure series describes the epifaunal trawl sampling efforts that were part of the June and October surveys.  During the two surveys, the team conducted four 10‑minute trawl tows at each of three drop zones inside the DWS for a total of 12 trawl tows.

The objective of the study is to characterize the epifaunal community (both invertebrates and fishes) at drop zones within the DWS, including a comparison of taxonomic richness and diversity between zones and with previous monitoring survey results. 

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Getting ready to deploy the trawl.


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Deploying the trawl.


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Sorting the catch.


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A Pacific sanddab (Citharichthys sordidus) from a trawl catch. Some of the scales have rubbed off. Note the orange-yellow spots.


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Egg capsule of the big skate (Raja binoculata) from the trawl catch. This one measured 256 mm, which is rather large for skates in general but is only average size for the aptly-named big skate.


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This spotted ratfish (Hydrolagus collier) and smelt (Osmeridae) from a trawl catch were measured and released.


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A staghorn sculpin (Leptocottus armatus) being measured.


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Boney fishes were measured as standard length (from tip of nose to end of vertebral column).


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A scallop shell was part of a trawl catch.


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A small octupus was caught during trawling. It was recorded and released.


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This large sea anemone retracted its tentacles following capture in a trawl.

2014 Mouth of the Columbia River Deep Water Site a...
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