Fieldwork will take place aboard RV MBA Sepia, a custom built 15.45 m category 2 Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) coded workboat that is capable of operating from shallow river and estuarine environments, up to 60 miles offshore. Sepia’s Skipper and Crew have over 34 combined years’ professional experience working in the diving and maritime industry, both in the UK and overseas. The team has extensive experience in deploying/recovering a wide range of survey equipment and excellent local knowledge of the habitats and species within Plymouth Sound and surrounding waters.
The Research Vessels (RVs) team has a proven track record of managing and delivering a wide range of marine surveys, utilising a wide range of survey techniques. The team leads MBA’s long-term demersal fish and zooplankton monitoring programmes that contribute to the Western Channel Observatory, which includes managing and contributing these important datasets to national data centres including The Marine Environmental Data and Information Network (MEDIN) and British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC). The team has proven excellence in species identification and since 2018 has participated in the NE Atlantic Marine Biological Analytical Quality Control Scheme (NMBAQC) Fish Reverse Ring Test (FRRT) - the quality assurance scheme for laboratories engaged in the production of marine biological data.