Hey! My name is Ben and I’m a filmmaker and photographer from the United Kingdom. Last week BBC wildlife presenter and myself were invited on board the Ranger to make a series of short films about the work that the Aeolians team are doing in the Tyrrhenian Sea.
After a long day’s travel from London to Salina, we got up early to meet the Ranger crew. Introductions were warm but fast, as we had to leave port and start collecting data.
As we reached the first collection site, the crew sprang into action and the science began. Seeing the ROV go into the water for the first time was very exciting. Lots of ropes, cables and cool bits of machinery being lowered into the water made for some great looking footage!
Over the next two days not only did Patrick and I get to know the ins-and-outs of the expedition, and the technical aspects of doing science on the open ocean, but we also got to know the crew. As exciting as it is exploring the ocean floor, the real stories always come from the people involved. Having a boatful of driven and interesting Spaniards definitely helps!
For me, the highlight of the trip was definitely hearing the passion and excitement of the crew when it came to talking about protecting the oceans. Seeing grassroots science like this is a rare opportunity, and not one I will soon forget. And those Mediterranean sunsets aren’t too bad either.