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15 April, 2003

I started the engine of the boat today!!!

I tendered once this morning and once this afternoon. I've gotten a lot of questions about tendering so I'm going to put some pictures up that will hopefully explain it more clearly.

Before and after a dive, the tender hauls all of the dive gear to the dock and then back to the dive locker. Gear includes air tanks, weight belts, bouyancy control devices or bc's, mesh collection sample bags, mesh bags with other gear such as fins, masks, etc

I started the engine for the first time today! Before the engine is started, there is a list of safety checks on the boat that we must go through. These safety checks include checking the amount of fuel, checking the fuel line, making sure the map is aboard, checking to make sure there is an emergency box on board, etc. It is a long, long list.

Here I'm helping Yushang get his BC and tank on.

I'm helping Yushang adjust his BC and tank.

I am helping Yushang get strapped into his BC and tank.

I am putting on Yushang's water proof gloves.

Once the divers are in the water, a tender constantly keeps one eye on the surface bubbles from the divers' tanks and one eye scanning the area for leopard seals.

Here, Dr. Anne Fairhead and I watch the bubbles and keep a loookout for leopard seals. We never let the bubbles out of our sight.

I am putting the carabineer into the water so that when the divers return, they can hook their sample collection bags to them while they get their gear off. They also hook their BC's to the carabineer so they don't float away while they are taking them off and while the tenders are lifting them back onto the boat. Finally, they use carabineers to hook their weight belts while they take them off, because if they accidentally dropped them, they would immediately descend to the bottom of the sea and be lost forever. A carabineer is just a big, heavy clip that is usually used by mountain climbers. We have them attached to ropes and hang them over the sides of the boat ready for the divers when they return.

I'm unhooking something here from the carabineer.

I'm taking Yushang's weight belt from him after a dive so he can get back into the boat.

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