10 May 2017
I am not going to lie, today was the least exciting day of all my days working in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Due to the really cold weather we did not went for frogs last night. And that means no frogs today to process in the lab. Nothing to do…
Weather continued to be pretty cold, with rain, hail and even some snow during the day. Temperature dropped as low as to just 1C. And we are here looking for a warm-loving frog!! So, no reason to go the field either tonight. On the positive side, weather forecast looks better from now. Probably still not super good tomorrow, but quite ok for frogs to restart breeding activity from Friday (forecast of 17-8C). And there were clear skies at the end of the day. We stay positive.
Another very, very, positive thing of the day was that having nothing to do in the lab allowed us to go to the rescue of our dry shipper. We knew that it was at Boryspil Airport in Kiev, and that they planned to bring it here at some point. But also knowing that “at some point” can easily be translated to “nobody knows when”, we decided that the 5 hours drive back and forth to Kiev was worthy. And finally there it was. But, before allowing us to take it back, I was asked THE tricky and potentially expensive question by the customs official “How much this thing costs?” I said a number, and maybe, just maybe, the price I said was “slightly” low… Just maybe… So, now the dry shipper is here, inside Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, ready to be filled with more frog samples in a few days. I hope.
Tomorrow, again, we will have no frogs to work with in the lab. So, our plan is going to the field with Sergey and Eugeni during the day, helping them in their work checking breeding success in birds using next boxes located in areas with different levels of radioactive contamination. And, if the weather is good enough, we will be back in the field during the night looking for more frogs in areas with medium level of radioactive contamination. Weather forecast is still a bit into the limit, not much sun and maximum of 13C, and around 7C during the night. Fingers crossed.
No changes in the levels of radiation accumulation, 2 more microSv to add, for a tot of 6. Still more os less the same levels than at home.