After this trip I will always remember how important the ocean is, and how important taking care of it is. On Aitutaki we learned different types of research protocol, but we also learned what community and kindness means.
Shannon and I have been going around this beautiful island interviewing locals. We’ve talked to some fisherman and hospital personal along with many others, everyone is very kind! It is interesting to hear about stories and theories of possible causes.
It seems to be a random fish poisoning that makes people here on Aitutaki sick. We heard from a person at the hospital that many fisherman have symptoms, seemingly because they try the fish before giving it to family members. Trevally seem to be the most infected reef fish but most people are very careful and have ways to determine if a caught fish is poisoned or not. Although people are careful, many and most fish are healthy and good eats!!
To keep up with the daily weather and general wonderful climate on the islands there is a satellite website. It shows most of the South Pacific Islands around New Zealand. On the map, Aitutaki is one of the smaller dots in the middle of the screen at 160w and 20s. There looks to be some clouds coming from the southwest but everything else looks clear!
My mouse is on the Cooks, I believe.
The average Sea Surface Temperature is about 29° Celsius at the Northern Islands and 25 at the Galapagos for some comparison. According to cook islands Bishop Museum.
I am most excited to experience a new place, completely different to anything I know. I’ve never been out of the country so this will be awesome!
Learning how to free dive and snorkel while doing research is probably one of the things I am most looking forward to. I’ve always loved the water, and can’t wait to experience a lagoon! I am curious about what coral reefs are like, how the habitat adapts and is dealing with the population fluctuations on Aitutaki.
The military history of the island also really interests me. To build something like a runway then just leave it, wow!
The Cook Islands are governed by a Prime Minister, similar to that of New Zealand and Great Britain.