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With stormy weather on the horizon, the 3am MOCNESS net pull showed some really great and unique fish.  For the first time, I saw a Red Velvet Whalefish.  I asked many questions about this fish as it was the first time I have seen or heard of it.  This fish occurs in deep tropical waters between 200m – 2,000m. To the touch, it felt fragile and not as hearty as it looks but it was still very impressive.

Below is a picture of the Red Velvet Whalefish.


Another cool catch was this juvenile Strawberry squid. Dr. Judkins quickly called me over to her station so I may take a look at it. If you look closely, this magnificent specimen is very tiny but what it lacks in size, it makes up in appearance.  This squid species can grow up to 0.5m in length and has 2 different sized eyes.  1 regular eye which is responsible for the positioning of the body’s trajectory and another telescopic eye that sits on top and constantly searches for food. 

Below is a picture taken through a microscope. My daughter says it looks like Minnie Mouse, what do you think?



The afternoon nets seem to pull up even stranger things.  With a completely full net 0 (254 fish specimens), Dr. Cook and Dr. Judkins completely transformed in to 90’s hip hop/pop queens!  They turned on the radio and the mood completely changed.  With records like Ice Ice Baby, Salt-n-Pepa’s Push It, and MC Hammer’s Can’t Touch This, the laboratory was almost like a karaoke party.  Everyone was singing along to every word without missing a beat.  I even got my partner Mike to jump in with a few verses.  But the total shock value increased when Dr. Sutton began rapping Snoop Dogg lyrics while sporting a backwards DEEPEND hat.  Everyone was filled with laughs and smiles, which helped overshadow the daunting task of many specimens to process, hence the title of this blog – MOC-MOC Baby!


Chris Valdes, Teacher at Sea



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Guest Tuesday, 28 June 2022