May 29, 2010

Yesterday started out so wonderfully.  The Gulf continued to be calm enough for us to be transported by airboat to breeding habitat to survey.  Lots of dolphin moved along the coast – some leaped completely out of the water.  By the time we were dropped off on the east side of the Mermentau River, I’d seen thousands of redfish.  One had been washed up in a rock barrier and seemed like such an easy catch if I weren’t moving high speed in the opposite direction in an airboat.

The distance we had to walk on foot seemed much longer than what we had estimated on the map.  We moved as fast as we could.  If we didn’t finish the site, we would have had to return to it the next day.  So, it was no big deal to get caught in an afternoon storm as long as the rain didn’t keep us from getting the work done.

Towards the end of the trek we spotted and caught a couple of chicks.  We also stumbled across a beach shanty.  From a distance, it looked like it was thrown together in an afternoon or so but once we got up close we could see all of the detail put into it.  We imagined that someone had been shipwrecked (why else would someone set up camp here at the edge of the Gulf?)   Further east we found an overturned drilling rig lifeboat.  That just added to our story.   Maybe someone comes out and maintains this little piece of land…. It was so specifically arranged and curious.

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