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2022 Year in Review - Training & Growth

While our main theme of 2021 was getting BRUVS distributed around the world, 2022 saw Blue Abacus heavily involved in training local teams in assembly, survey design and deployment of the rigs. While there was plenty of field work and training we also remained busy building and distributing even more BRUVS through the year.

In March and April Jason conducted 10 day training surveys in each of Cayman, Montserrat and Anguilla, three of the initial Overseas Territories to receive BRUVS Expedition Boxes as part of the Global Ocean Wildlife Analysis Network (GOWAN).

In the crystal clear waters of Cayman, Jason joined the team from the Department of Environment to conduct both seabed and midwater work. In Montserrat, the Department of Fisheries joined forces with the Royal Montserrat Police Services to deploy BRUVS from the police patrol vessel, Helconia Star. Rounding out a month of training and field work with the Department of Natural Resources in Anguilla, Jason and the various teams completed over 150 deployments on the three different Caribbean Islands.

Cody Panton, Paul Chin, Sabrina Douglas and Claire Fletcher - Cayman Islands Dept. of Environment. Midwater deployments aboard m/v Reef Keeper.

Left: Chief Engineer Hall, Royal Montserrat Police Service deploying from Helconia Star.

Right: Anguilla Senior Fisheries Officer, Randall Richardson, rig synchronization before deployment.

June saw both Jessica and Jason attend World Ocean's Day Symposium in London, England. Jessica gave a presentation regarding the use of BRUVS and examples of the critical information that they can gather. During the course of the Symposium, Lord Goldsmith, Minister for Overseas Territories, Commonwealth, Energy, Climate and Environment at the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, examined the Blue Abacus BRUVS rigs and expressed his support and backing for the GOWAN programme.

Small spotted cat shark - Project SIARC Wales

BRUVS Expedition Boxes continued to be delivered by Blue Abacus with rigs going to the Zoological Society of London's Project Siarc, Viking Cruise Lines polar expedition vessels m/v Octantis and m/v Polaris, the Prince Albert II Foundation in Monaco and several more Universities and NGOs.

By the end of 2022, more than 200 Blue Abacus BRUVS were delivered and operating in all five of the world's oceans to record the status of marine life.

In October Jason boarded Viking's m/v Octantis to train the science team on BRUVS deployments and data management during the vessel's transit from New York City to Antarctica. Sampling was successfully completed in Virgin Gorda, St Barth's, Montserrat and St Lucia where Jason disembarked while Octantis continued south.

Expedition Central aboard Octantis with BRUVS footage taken earlier on the same day featured on the big screen. All manner of science from Weather Balloon launch information to underwater BRUVS footage is shared here with guests by the science team on a daily basis.

With the calendar year coming to a close there was still time for one more training trip and Jason travelled to the Turks & Caicos Islands to work with the team from the Department of Environment and Coastal Resources, conducting both midwater and seabed deployments in Grace Bay, Providinciales. The team obtained over 90 hours of video in five days on the water. In processing the video samples, Blue Abacus identified, counted and measured 1,659 individuals from 75 taxa of fishes, turtles and invertebrates.

A curious Southern Stingray checks out the Blue Abacus BRUVS rig - Turks & Caicos Islands

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