We finished our last push of field work this Tuesday, after a very successful trip back to the Snake River to aggregate some pocketbooks and heelsplitters. We greeted our old friends at Freddie's Restaurant, ate the continental breakfast at AmericInn one last time, upset a very tiny very fluffy white dog at the riverside, and found more leeches in two days than we had in the seven weeks preceding. We finally found the elusive heelsplitters in the shallow water and reeds by the white dog, instead of the deeper pools like we had expected. For the entirety of the summer, I don't think we ever successfully predicted where the mussels we wanted would be. Always keeping us on our toes--what mischievous creatures! (And for those of you that have seen the picture of us on the front page of the Macalester website, we do not agree with the claim that mussels are "unglamorous" creatures. Fascinating, beautiful, overlooked, complex, yes, but never unglamorous!)
|The very definition of glamour|
We returned to the lab on Wednesday, and because it was Kelly's last day (And the day before Brooke's birthday) we had a "fun day"! Which to us meant, after a delicious and enlightening lunch at Kelly's house where her children revealed all the family secrets, we drove to Target and did some personal grocery shopping. It's what everyone wishes they could do on their fun day at work but are too shy to say, obviously. We finished with a final stop at Nelson's, where we all raised a spoon in Dan's honor before eating approximately a gallon of ice cream each. Good day.
For our final two days, we have quite a lengthy to-do list, including more sediment, data analysis, poster-making, and cleaning out the garage and the beachful of sand in the truck. I'm looking forward to making sense of all the data we've collected and translating it so everyone can understand the important work we've been doing! We are planning on presenting our posters at the Macalester summer research poster session during family weekend, as well as at the St. Croix River Research Rendezvous and possibly the Minnesota State Fair, so check us out at all of these places if you can! We'd love to explain more about what we've accomplished this summer!
|The whole crew on the Snake River|
(photo credit Macalester Promotional Material)