By Dustin Brewer, Graduate Student Fellow
Luckily, my dad offered his skills and designed a platform system for the audio gear which could easily be assembled and disassembled:
So, I was able to cut my way through the ice in a canoe and then assemble the platform for the audio gear in the marsh. Here is what an assembled platform, in the marsh, looks like:
I got some of these platforms set up on March 17, well before I expected the first rails to arrive. This allowed me to test them out and to make sure that the ice wouldn’t shift and break the platforms, etc. I also expected that there could be spring flooding. However, I didn’t expect that the flooding would be as extreme as it was! This is what I saw on March 25 when I was trying to access one of my field sites:
So, for the day, I didn’t access that site. I drove to a nearby site and went out into the marsh and set up some more platforms as well as a couple autonomous recording units (ARUs). My plan was that by having these recording devices deployed, I’d be able to better pinpoint when the rails arrived. When I came back the next week, I was shocked to see that the already-high water had risen another 2 feet! As you can see in this picture, my platforms were submerged and my ARUs narrowly avoided inundation.