Deployment sites: Georgia Island, Weddell Antarctic coast, Amundsen bay
Supporting institutions: Natural Environment Research Council (UK)
Our project grew from the desire for better understanding the physical environment in the Atlantic part of the Southern Ocean and to improve our knowledge of the behaviour and habits of pinnipeds roaming the sub-polar and polar seas. We started with the SEaOS (Southern Elephant seals as Oceanographic Samplers) , which was followed by the SAVEX (South Atlantic Variability EXperiment) project, which formed the UK portion of the international MEOP program during the last International Polar Year to generate cross-disciplinary understanding of polar ecosystems. Both projects involved Southern elephant seals which were tagged on South Georgia (2004, 2005, 2008, and 2009) and the Falkland Islands (2010). We also focused our efforts on the Antarctic shelf in the Weddell (2007, 2009 and 2011) and Amundsen Seas (2014) by tagging Southern elephant seals and Weddell seals.
Mike Meredith is the leader of the Polar Oceans research programme at the British Antarctic Survey and is interested in the response of the oceans around Antarctica to large-scale climate variability and in the interannual-to-decadal variability in Southern Ocean water mass properties, circulation and fluxes. Mike has in-depth experience of ship-based physical oceanography, and has used bottom pressure data, acoustic measurements, and hydrography to investigate the transport variability of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current. He too was part of the SEaOS and SAVEX projects.