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MI charters fisheries research vessel for second survey


By Kimberley Thornhill

The Marine Institute (MI) is once again chartering the RV Celtic Explorer from the Irish Marine Institute in Galway, Ireland, for research conducted by MI's Centre for Fisheries Ecosystems Research (CFER).

The vessel left Galway on Apr. 29 and arrived in St. John's on May 8. The vessel's crew immediately loaded the RV Celtic Explorer with the necessary equipment to conduct its survey until early June.

Followers of the research vessel the RV Celtic Explorer can track the ship's progress as it conducts its research at

The online blog provides daily information about the work conducted by the researchers and crew aboard the vessel, including Dr. George Rose, scientific director of the CFER.

Dr. Rose and his team of researchers, scientists and graduate students conducted their first overwintering cod survey using the RV Celtic Explorer in February 2011.

The research led by CFER is expected to result in a better understanding of fish stocks and the status of Newfoundland and Labrador's marine ecosystem. The research will significantly add to the existing knowledge about the province's marine fisheries ecosystems while supporting the development of sustainable and profitable fisheries in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Government of Newfoundland helped launch CFER in July 2010 by providing the Marine Institute with $11.75 million to establish the centre. This includes $6.5 million toward the human resources and operating costs of the centre, over the next five years, and $5.25 million for the chartering of large research vessels for offshore research. The Research & Development Corporation (RDC) also contributed $1.5 million to the centre.