this morning the ROV descended to about 3000m to search for mysid shrimp, to measure their rate of oxygen consumption.  after collecting enough to fill the test chambers, we hung the whole set-up on a mooring at about 2800m and left it, to be collected tomorrow when 24 hours of data have been logged.  this whole process astounds me.  drop casually down to 3km below the surface, maneuver an ROV the size of a small bus to catch individual shrimp smaller than your little finger, and then attach the whole set-up to a pre-existing cable and just come back later.  i mean: wow.

from there we headed up to relatively shallow depths to search for squid and other exciting creatures.  on the way up, we happened across this Galiteuthis at 1075m (still very respectable!), but then had about two hours of seeing absolutely nothing. fair enough, i guess; the ocean is huge and the deep sea is a pretty challenging environment.  but just as we were losing heart, we asked the magic 8 ball (i’m actually not kidding) whether we might (1) see Octopoteuthis sometime soon, and (2) see anything interesting within the next ten minutes.  it answered DEFINITELY YES to both questions, causing us to scoff a bit.  but then?  within three minutes a Stigmatoteuthis dolfleini swam directly in front of us (one of the largest histioteuthids, a beautiful family of ‘jeweled’ squids, and a species that they’ve only seen out here three times in 16 years).  and then, a half hour later, we encountered not one, but two Octopoteuthis deletron.  i did not get the chance to photograph these as the aquarium folks whisked them straight off to comfy dark boxes, but i can assure you that they were stunning.  and magic 8 ball, i’m sorry i ever doubted you.