A number of the Heriot-Watt Scientific dive team have been working tirelessly this summer on the Dornoch Environmental Enhancement Project, DEEP for short. The work this summer has been done in support of the main restoration project as well as supporting research carried out by associated research students! Since June the team have been been working all over Scotland. Conducting site monitoring surveys, studying how oysters cycle carbon (through feeding and growth) and having some very early (3am..) starts all while being rewarded by great Dornoch Sunrises and fantastic west coast tans!
The team are just finishing up on the most recent survey and can certainly feel that winter is on the way with the dropping air temperatures. Glove weather is fast approaching! DEEP will be back in the Dornoch later this year to check up on how the restored oyster reef is developing as well as deploying data loggers which monitor changes in Salinity, Temperature, Oxygen and tidal current.
Hannah is a PhD student at Heriot-Watt university as well as a member of the Heriot-Watt dive team. Hannahs work focuses on blue carbon - the carbon locked up in our oceans - and the role bivalve shellfish play in carbon cycling. Her dive training started in the tropical climes of Mexico, however, her more recent dives have consisted of the slightly less tropical but no less beautiful coastline of North Wales and Scotland. Certainly colder!