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2012 Student Scholars Day
Monitoring Quagga Mussel Growth using Remotely Operated Vehicles
Participants attending from 2:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. Presenter: Mara
Deckinga Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) can be used to monitor
quagga mussel growth and to map threatened archaeological sites.
Inexpensive ROVs made of PVC pipes are another option for researchers
studying our underwater heritage. With the support of the Great Lakes
Naval Memorial and Museum, video observation of mussel colonization was
made on artificial substrate over 2 months. Inspection of the substrate
was conducted every 2 weeks by video observation and visual inspection.
Video from a professional ROV and a PVC pipe ROV were compared. Adult
mussels migrated to the box. ROV footage showed algae discoloration, but
the grid system restricted ability to count mussels. The inexpensive PVC
pipe ROV worked as well as the professional-grade ROV for the purposes
of monitoring mussel growth. Use of inexpensive ROV technology is a
viable option for mapping the effects of mussel growth on underwater
archaeological sites. Mentors: Mark Schwartz, Mark Gleason, PhD
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