We love this picture of a CTD (Conductivity, Temperature, and Depth) rosette just beneath the surface just posted by California Cooperative Oceanic Fisheries Investigations (CalCOFI) at the start of a two-week-long cruise off Southern California aboard R/V Sally Ride.
The cruise is part of a series of quarterly surveys run by CalCOFI to study the marine environment off the coast of California and the management of its living resources, and to monitor the indicators of El Niño and climate change. Researchers deploy CTDs at each location, collecting collect water samples from various depths to measure their salinity, temperature, and other contents. The program has been in existence since 1949, making the California coast among the most extensively studied ocean regions in the world.
The current cruise is Sally Ride's second CalCOFI expedition and one of its first research cruises since being drydocked this spring to receive a variety of upgrades.
CalCOFI is a collaboration among the California Department of Fish & Wildlife, NOAA Fisheries Service and Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego. Follow CalCOFI on Twitter or Facebook for more images and cruise updates.