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August 13, 2013

The 2013 Oceana Ranger Mediterranean Expedition has set sail


© OCEANA / Carlos Minguell


Less than two months after our successful coastal expedition in the Baltic ended, we’ve sent out another team on board the Ranger, our research catamaran, to study a (very) little known escarpment (steep slope, rocky wall) in the Spanish Mediterranean just south of Cabrera National Park.

Emile Baudot, as the escarpment is called, rises out of the Algerian-Balearic basin and spans across almost 300 kilometres of seabed between the south of Formentera and Menorca. One of the deepest areas in the Spanish Mediterranean, it starts at more than 2,000 metres below sea level and reaches the continental shelf at a depth of just over 200 metres.  

We’re excited because no one has ever taken underwater footage of this area, but we’ve got just the thing for it, our underwater robot (ROV). We’ll be sending it as far down as 1000 meters to gather never before seen photos and video. With this information, we’ll be able to get a clearer idea of the ecosystem in the area, and thus contribute to our knowledge of this remarkable sea.

This time around, the Mediterranean expedition isn’t going out to sea for as long as usual, our crew should be back in less than two weeks – but that’s when the real work begins: analyzing all the data, processing it, and turning it into proposals that are backed by solid research.

As always, our onboard team is writing daily diary entries (and sending pictures!), which we will post on our website, as soon as they become available. You can take a look at the first entry here.