As a physical oceanographer I have a love-hate relationship with sea life. Ocean biology is totally cool….until it interferes with my measurements. I’m looking at you barnacles on my ADCP.
But swimming animals that can measure where oceanographers fear to tread, I am ALL OVER THAT. So here’s my favorite species…the ones I can stick instruments/tracking devices on.
THIS WEDDELL SEAL.
No one measures the temperature, conductivity and pressure of the Southern Ocean with so much style.
THIS PENGUIN WITH A BACKPACK.
Before there was the iWatch, there was a Penguin with a backpack monitoring its vital signs.
THIS TRACKABLE TURTLE HATCHLING.
OH HAI turtle hatchling with a nanoacoustic tracking tag. I am sure tracking “frenzy” swimming from the beach where you hatched to deep water resulted in the most adorable science ever.
THIS PORPOISE WITH A PURPOSE.
spy on you protect America. Just adding another entry to the jerk list. (And yes, I know that is really a dolphin. And it is duty-bound to defend my first amendment right to use incorrect nomenclature for dramatic alliteration to the death.)
While they may have lost to Elephant Seals in an epic battle for total ocean domination, I still love their deep diving, Baffin Bay temperature tracking ways.
THE WALRUS AND THE HOCKY PUCK.
Walruses. They smell. They snort. They have inappropriately tiny, red beady eyes. We love them nonetheless and track their every move from the sea ice, to the haulout on an Alaskan barrier island to Russia and beyond.