Pristine Seas@natgeopristineseas

The National Geographic Pristine Seas project is dedicated to protecting the last wild places in the ocean. Currently exploring: Azores, Portugal.

http://go.ted.com/enricsala

Princess Alice Bank is a submerged seamount known for the abundance of pelagic marine life seen there. And sure enough, during one of our dives at the seamount yesterday we found ourselves among this school of box rays, Mobula tarapacana, gliding gently through the water, feeding on plankton. This species of ray can reach up to 12 feet in width!

Shot by @manusanfelix_official with @jordichias on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


26

The perfect conditions for exploration don’t just put wind in your sails; they put a spring in your step and an extra tug in your arms. And we were lucky to have them on our side as we set sail from Flores for Gigante Seamount, where we are deploying our drop cameras for a look at the depths around the seamount.

Shot by @jonbetzfilms on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


6

Underwater cinematographer @manusanfelix_official captured this close-up of a huge dusky grouper eye surrounded by fish lice while diving at Corvo Island. “It is so impressive to dive with big fishes that you don’t pay attention to small details. But this grouper was so curious and friendly that I saw the fleas concentrated around his eyes,” he wrote from the field. These tiny parasitic copepods feed on the mucus and blood of their host fish.

Shot by @manusanfelix_official on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


11

Diving among nimble schools of grey triggerfish (Balistes capriscus) and white trevally (Pseudocaranx dentex) in the waters of Corvo Island.

Shot by @jonbetzfilms on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


12

On the western coast of Flores Island, steep cliffs give way to flat, coastal areas called fajãs. This fajã was created by lava flows and provides an ideal underwater habitat for a variety of marine life.
Shot by @jonbetzfilms and @manusanfelix_official on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


4

Photographed about four miles offshore from Flores Island yesterday: The tagging team were been looking for blue sharks to tag, but instead they came across this beautiful female Mako shark.
Shot by @manusanfelix_official on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


12

Spotted by @fotonunosa and photographed by @manusanfelix_official on expedition: This striking pelagic nudibranch, Glaucus atlanticus, spends its life drifting upside down on the ocean’s surface and feeding on other pelagic creatures, including the venomous Portuguese man o’ war. Despite possessing a gladiator-like name and diet, this strange little sea slug is only about one inch long!

Shot on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


23

This World Oceans Day, we were excited to have 60 children from the Lajes das Flores school come visit the Santa María Manuela, meet the expedition team, and learn about the wonders of their local seascape and how we conduct scientific research to better understand it!

Shot by @jonbetzfilms on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc #WorldOceansDay


3

Happy #WorldOceansDay! This stunning imagery was shot on our recent expedition to Argentina's Tierra del Fuego, Isla de los Estados and Yaganes region, where we explored rich marine ecosystems and the productive waters that support them. There is no better day than World Oceans Day to celebrate Argentina's current efforts to take new leadership in marine conservation, as they work on the creation of two new large marine reserves in these waters: Yaganes and Namuncurá-Burdwood 2.
This expedition was carried out in collaboration with @minisambiente @parquesnacionalesar @tierradelfuegogob @foro.marpatagonico | #Yaganes #burdwood2 #Argentina #NatGeo #pristineseas #ocean #conservation


5

Diving off the coast of Pico Island in the Azores yesterday, our team discovered crystal clear waters and vibrant algae.
Shot by @manusanfelix_official on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


14

The high seas - marine waters beyond any country’s jurisdiction - cover 64% of the ocean’s surface, and are dominated by a handful of fishing countries that reap the biggest benefits of fishing in these global commons. The main types of fishing in the high seas target tuna, sharks, squid, krill, and deep bottom-dwelling fish. But do these countries really benefit from that distant fishing? And who does? Our new study reveals that, without large government subsidies, fishing in more than half of the current high seas fishing grounds would be unprofitable. In fact, on aggregate, subsidies to high seas fishing (more than $4 billion per year) are more than twice larger than the profits. These results support the idea of eliminating subsidies that perpetuate overfishing and destruction of the marine environment. For a bolder proposal for conservation of the high seas, watch @EnricSala's TED talk at the link in our profile.

Photograph by Simon Ager | @natgeo @globalfishingwatch @natgeopristineseas #highseas


13

While diving in the channel between S. Jorge and Pico islands, @ManuSanFelix_official spotted this Portuguese man o'war. Although the Portuguese man o’ war (Physalia physalis) looks like a single multi-cellular organism, it's actually a siphonophore—a colonial organism made up of multiple individual, specialized animals!

Photographed by @manusanfelix_official on our expedition to the Azores in partnership with @oceanoazulfoundation and @waittfoundation | #oceanoazulexpedition #oceanoazulfoundation #NatGeo #pristineseas #blueazores #oceanconservation #Azores #science #ocean #emepc


109