The Discover Oceanography boat trip will provide a comprehensive introduction to marine science in Southampton Water, using the state-of-the-art Research Vessel Callista. You will survey the physical environment of the estuary, using standard oceanographic instruments such as Temperature Salinity probes and historical techniques such as the Secchi Disk. The data that you collect will reveal the behaviour of matter and energy in the marine environment as it responds to the tide – the earthly manifestation of the clockwork of the Solar System – and show how these physical processes influence the patterns of life in the oceans.
You will also explore the marine biology of Southampton Water, using plankton nets and a microscope in the on-board laboratory to identify the dominant forms of floating plant and animal life. Grab samples and trawls also allow you to investigate the impact of local industry and port activities on larger animals in the estuary, providing an appreciation of the principles of ecology and the influence of humans on the environment.
During your visit all activities will be supervised by staff who are experienced practitioners and educators in marine science and fully trained in all relevant aspects of safety. You will be encouraged to participate in all of the on-board activities and to ask any questions you may have relating to, not only marine science but other aspects of the marine world. Working aboard the research vessel will also provide an opportunity to see the latest navigational techniques and instruments used in marine science, from Global Position System satellites to seabed sonar.
As well as introducing you to the opportunities and challenges of marine science, these hands-on activities will also foster team-working skills and provide a memorable field trip experience.
The following worksheets can be downloaded and printed for use during or after the trip: