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June 14, 2008

The Sisargas Islands




We are now near the Sisargas Islands, a groups of islands that were not included in the National Park of the Atlantic Islands. As such, the sea bottoms are not protected and fishing activities around the islands are not regulated according to environmental interests. The distance that separates these islands from the ones included in the National Park is significant. This seems to be one of the reasons why they were not included, because managing this whole area would be quite difficult. So we begin to document these bottoms, in order to prove they require protection. We document a large quantity of corals and sponges during two immersions with the ROV.

As far as cetaceans are concerned, today we are lucky enough to see a Risso’s dolphin (Grampus griseus) before 11 a.m., although we were not able to document it. Josi, the head diver, sees its tailfin and alerts us. We were able to see the dorsal fin and part of its body, whitish in colour. This means the specimen is quite old because they get whiter as they age. They can measure up to 4 meters in length and this one seems quite large.