This summer, I came back home to intern as a research diver for a marine biology lab in Santa Barbara. Aside from getting to call myself a professional SCUBA diver, I was able to dive in some of the most beautiful places that I have ever been to, above or below water. We mainly conducted benthic surveys of rocky reefs in the Santa Barbara Channel, so I got to dive in gorgeous kelp forests and rocky subtidal habitats. These are a few photos from around the Channel that give an idea of the places where I worked this summer.
Cruising around Anacapa Island
A section of the 30 meter-long tape we used to conduct our benthic surveys. This stretch included urchins, bat stars, cup coral, and a cool-looking sea slug
Wetsuits drying at sunset
Sundown at Santa Cruz Island
Since we couldn’t get enough of the ocean, some of us interns decided to go whale watching one weekend. We spotted this whale tail with SB in the background.
Two of my dive buddies training to do fish surveys.
A bat ray hiding in a seagrass bed off of Santa Cruz Island.
A cabezon hiding under a huge rock off of Santa Cruz Island
A kelp crab getting defensive after I stuck my camera in its face
Climbing around the edge of Santa Cruz Island