Googled: "small research vessel," Jacque Costeau and Calypso (need something smaller), "whale songs" and "recording whale songs" and "how are whale songs recorded." Found interesting tidbits on recording devices, but not much on ships.
A small group of marine biologists pull an injured merman out of the water. The biologists were just going about their regularly scheduled business, which is probably recording whales, but may change according to story needs.
What kind of ship would they have? I need it to be as small as it can possibly be (so I don't have to deal with too many people on it) and still be a lengthy trip away from land and able to handle eight feet of angry, terrified merman.
And more importantly, what does the inside look like? What would they have on board? What kind of equipment does one need for deploying buoys with recording devices attached to them and tagging whales with listening devices? I have learned from National Geographic and the Discovery Channel that one needs a long stick, but what else?