Neuston Net Research Collective


DISCOVERY Vessel Schooner Shellback
Bay of Islands, New Zealand
Ongoing since March 2023

DISCOVERY Vessel Shellback is sailing from New Zealand to California coastlines collecting neustonic samples for Dr. Rebecca Helm using a SeaKeepers neuston net. Dr. Helm will analyze these samples via detailed photographs to understand the presence of life at the ocean surface, especially in gyres and garbage patches. Little is known about the surface ecosystem, and the collection of this data may help inform the creation of new Marine Protected Areas to protect this biodiversity.

Purpose of Research

In November 2022, The International SeaKeepers Society launched the Neuston Net Research Collective to assist marine researchers with widespread sample collection. Vessels are equipped with neuston or plankton nets to collect Sargassum samples for Dr. Mike Parsons of Florida Gulf Coast University or document neustonic organisms such as Blue Button Jellyfish and Portuguese Man-o-War for Dr. Rebecca Helm of Georgetown University. These vessels allow for more robust data sets that our researchers will benefit from to further their marine studies and aid in the conservation of our oceans.

Duration of Project

Ongoing since March 2023

Partner Sites

Georgetown University

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