Several members of the Monterey Bay MBON team (Francisco Chavez (MBARI/COS), Marguerite Blum (MBARI), Tim Pennington (MBARI), Kris Walz (MBARI), and Collin Closek (Stanford Univ./COS)) participated in a nine-day cruise (September 23 – October 1 2016) on MBARI’s R/V Western Flyer. The cruise was part of an MBARI program called CANON (Controlled, Agile and Novel Observing Network). The cruise was focused on testing new technologies in Monterey Bay and contiguous waters of the California Current system as well as on sampling water for eDNA for microbial, plankton, and vertebrate diversity.
Results from this expedition will be compared to samples collected at the same sites on last year’s cruise during El Niño. The MBON team collected samples from 50 stations within Monterey Bay at multiple depths between 0 and 200m to expand our understanding of Monterey Bay ecosystems and further develop eDNA methods. More than 300 eDNA samples were collected. Environmental conditions during the 2016 CANON cruise were quite different from those observed during the Fall 2015 CANON and the Spring 2016 Rockfish cruises, as there were dense algal blooms occurring throughout the Bay this year.