By JCVI Staff

Going west!

Mike Thordyke and Katarina Abrahamsson giving a tour of Kristineberg research station to the Sorcerer II crew

After saying good bye to our new friends in Rostock/Warnemünde I was looking forward to coming back to Swedish waters, this time a bit saltier, on the west coast. There are two marine field stations on the Swedish west coast belonging to The Sven Lovén Center for Marine Sciences. Our first stop was in station Kristineberg, beautifully situated just opposite of Lysekil, a major tourist destination in this part of Sweden. Kristineberg is yet another historical marine field station, founded in 1877. We were greeted by Professors Mike Thorndyke, head of the Kristineberg Marine Genomics group, and Katarina Abrahamsson, head of the station. The next morning we headed out together with Mike, Katarina and a couple of other local scientists to sample in Gullmarsfjorden, a 25 km fjord with a shallow threshold entrance and a maximum depth of almost 120 meters, resulting in a highly stratified water column.

When we got back from sampling we had a chance to get a tour of the station and after the crew were invited for a lovely dinner and got to try some delicious Swedish west coat shrimp.

When the time came to get going the staff in Kristineberg suggested that we make another stop on our way to Oslo, in Tjärnö the other marine research station on the west coast. I was excited to go back to Tjärnö because about 10 years ago I spent a couple of weeks there when taking an undergraduate ecology course.

Head of the station, Professor Kerstin Johannesson welcomed us when we arrived and within an hour a large crowd of curious staff and students had gathered around the boat and were invited onboard for a tour. Kerstin reciprocated by showing us around the station. The crew particularly enjoyed the petting zoo aquarium where we could play with sea stars and sea cucumbers!

It was a beautiful quite night and I went kayaking around the small islands nearby.

Karolina in the kayak. Photo by John Henke, Sorcerer II first mate.
Karolina in the kayak. Photo by John Henke, Sorcerer II first mate.

The next day we picked up a sample outside the station and continued north through the Oslo fjord, the weather was spectacular and logistics coordinator Sarah Dyste and I decided to jump in the refreshing water for a swim.

Sorcerer II is now docked in Oslo, right in front of Town hall, were we just had and amazing tour and were invited to meet the deputy mayor of Olso. He was curious about our research and also told us a lot about Oslo’s interesting history.

The time has come for me to say good bye to the rest of the crew and fly home to Stockholm, where I will continue my cyanobacteria projects in the lab. It has been an absolutely amazing summer and I can’t wait to get back to the boat in later this year to meet with Mediterranean collaborators and get ready for sampling in the Med in 2010!

Bye for now,