Cruise inventory

FRV Alba Na Mara 1111A

Cruise plan

Cruise Info. 
Ship name (ship code)FRV Alba Na Mara (74NM)
Cruise identifier1111A
Cruise period2011-08-15 — 2011-08-29
Port of departureFraserburgh, United Kingdom
Port of returnFraserburgh, United Kingdom

1. To obtain estimates of the distribution and abundance of Nephrops burrows in the Firth of Forth, Moray Firth and off Arbroath using underwater cameras.
2. To use the TV footage to record the occurrence of other benthic fauna and evidence of commercial trawling activity.
3. To collect trawl caught samples of Nephrops for comparison of reproductive condition and morphometrics in each of the different survey areas.
4. To collect sediment samples at each station.


Where possible, a random stratified approach will be adopted to investigate Nephrops burrow density in different regions of the study areas. A list of proposed stations for the survey will be made available to the ship's complement prior to the cruise.

1. TV Observations
At each station, a video camera mounted on a sledge will be towed across the seabed for approximately 10 minutes at approximately 1 knot. Nephrops burrows abundance, other benthic fauna and signs of anthropogenic activity will be recorded on to DVD. Distance traveled by the sledge, the depth at which the sledge is at and camera height from the seabed will be monitored and recorded using a range finder mounted on the sledge.

2. Sediment sampling
Samples of the sediment will be taken at each station using the sledge mounted mini van Veen sediment grab. If this system fails at any time, the traditional winch operated Day Grab will be deployed. All sediment samples will be frozen.

3. Trawling
Fishing trawls of approximately 30 minutes duration will be made on each sediment type within each survey area. A range of biological data will be collected on Nephrops and other shellfish contained in the catch.

4. Drop Frame
The drop frame will be used where conditions are not suitable for using the TV sledge, recording similar data as to that of the TV sledge.


TV work will normally take place during daylight hours. There will be a requirement for some trawling to take place in the evening. On days where trawling will take place, work patterns will be arranged so not to exceed WTD recommendations.
It is proposed that work will commence in the Firth of Forth. There will be a staff change on 19 August where C Hepple will be replaced by H Dobby. It is expected that this exchange will take place at Rosyth. On 25 August, it is intended to make a port call to Invergordon to allow H Dobby to leave the vessel. There will be no replacement for her for the remaining 3 working days of the cruise.

Normal contacts will be maintained with the laboratory.
Chief scientistAdrian Weetman (Marine Scotland Aberdeen Marine Laboratory)
ProjectRV1111 / 10763
Cruise programmeFRV Alba Na Mara 1111A cruise programme 1111a.pdf — access key 'C' (0.02 MB) 
Ocean/sea areas 
GeneralNorth Sea
SpecificFirth of Forth, Moray Firth and off Arbroath