Monday, 25 June 2012

Ocean sampling day 20th of June 2012 at Helgoland Roads, Germany.

Helgoland is Germany’s only deep-sea island approximately 60 km off the German coast. This island is located in the middle of the German Bight (North Sea) and offers, in terms of its biodiversity, one of the richest habitats along the German coast. The Biological Institute on Helgoland, which undertook sampling on the summer solstice for the Ocean Sampling Day 2012 pilot was founded in 1892. The institute is part of the Alfred-Wegner-Institute for polar and marine research ( providing one of the longest marine data sets worldwide with environmental and biological data collected since 1873 (temperature and salinity). Given its long history of marine research, it is indeed perfect for this institute to take part in the OSD pilot in collaboration with the Micro B3 community (

In the morning of the 20th of June we were blessed with beautiful sunny weather and a very calm sea. Two bottles of surface water were collected at 8 am at the Kabeltonne, which is located between the dune and the main island Helgoland, and brought into the lab. Here we started the filtration procedure. With a pressure pump we managed to filter 1L of water trough all 4 Sterivex filters in about one hour. We were lucky though. From a local scientist we heard that usually there are so many particles in the water that these filters would clog easily after 200 ml. So this might be a problem we could face in the future OSD sampling. In the afternoon we were heading back to the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen ( to store the samples there, as shipping from an island can sometimes cause difficulties.

Julia Schnetzer, Michael Schneider, Hilke Döpke, Antje Wichels und Gunnar Gerdts 

Helgoland, Germany, North Sea

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