Alberto Brito boarded the Oceana Ranger first thing that morning. Alberto is a zoology and biological oceanography professor at Universidad de La Laguna. A large portion of his research has been focused on studying Canarian marine fauna. 7 Since the expedition began, Alberto got in touch with us and has been giving us his invaluable help to identify corals, gorgonians and fish. It has practically turned into a habit: after the submersions, Ricardo sends him a series of stills of species that both of them manage to identify.
Today we are lucky enough to have him aboard with us. According to how the voyage started off, we can already see that he is another major enthusiast of these topics. Seated in the living room, we spent hours looking at the images and shots from the ROV from previous submersions. I have the feeling that if it were up to him, we could spend hours and hours like that.
We submerged with the ROV in Radazul. Even though we found gorgonians (Letogorgia ruberrima), sea whips (Funiculina quadrangularis, Viminella flagellum), (Chlorophthalmus agassizi, Cyttopsis rosea, Chaunax xp., Acantholabrus pailloni, Anthias antias), and we even found a species that we had not documented until now (the little corals, Deltocyahtus sp.), it was not one of the best submersions. It’s a shame that Alberto was not able to enjoy a better submersion live, but with the number of images from previous days he has seen, I am almost sure that he came away with a complete view of how we go about our work and the expedition.
When we came into port, to finish up the day, we had a visit from Pablo Martín Sosa, Sebastián Jimenez Navarro and Francisco Abascal on board. All three work at the Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO are the initials in Spanish). Pablo and Sebastián are the ones in charge of developing the INDEMARES project in the islands. We were showing them the work we do during the expedition discussing ROV methodology and use.