Oceana is launching an expedition to survey fishing activities in the Alboran Sea, the westernmost part of the Mediterranean. We will explore sites impacted by bottom trawling and other fishing activities, to document the damage done by this type of fishing, which is even allowed in marine protected areas.
We will sail with Oceana’s catamaran, The Ranger, and the team will include marine scientists and experts on sustainable fisheries and the protection of marine habitats. They will survey coastal and open-sea areas with the help of an underwater drone (a remotely operated vehicle, or ROV) that goes up to 300 metres deep. ROV dives will be performed in several spots to get evidence of the possible existence of trawl marks affecting protected species and habitats.
Located between two continents, the Alboran Sea is a critical spot for the migration of iconic species on their way to and from the Atlantic Ocean. These include fish of commercial interest, from sharks to tunas and swordfish, as well as threatened species, such as sea turtles and many cetaceans. This wealth of wildlife explains the importance of fishing activity in the region and the need to make it compatible with the preservation of biodiversity. Oceana has conducted several expeditions in the area to gather data to support our policy campaigns.
Don’t miss our Instagram stories!
Senior Director Development & Innovation Europe
Deputy Vice President for Europe
Marco Antonio Panosian
Fisheries Campaign Director
Social Media Specialist
Senior GIS Analyst and Logistics Coordinator
Senior Marine Scientist
Senior Advisor & Expedition Leader
In the News
September 21, 2023
It’s the final moments of our expedition on board the Ranger, an expedition during which we’ve been able to document the effects of trawling. Thanks to our ROV, we’ve been able to see how in trawled areas there is practically no life left, while, just a few metres away, in…
September 20, 2023
With the engines ready again, we moved eastwards, between Cartagena and Cape Palos. On the way to our chosen spot, we saw a small group of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and more schools of flying fish. When we reached the area we wanted to survey, we used the ROV. The…
September 19, 2023
In every expedition there are days when, even if we want to, we can’t go out to sea. Today is one of those days because our beloved Ranger needs a tune-up. However, days like this give us the opportunity to reflect a little on all the conditions that have to…
September 18, 2023
This morning we continue our research on the activity of bottom trawlers. Our plan is to survey the south and east of Cartagena, where we can find a marine protected area (Valles sumergidos del escarpe de Mazarrón) and another site that is proposed for protection, off Cape Palos. Theresa Zabell…
September 17, 2023
After almost 10 years with Oceana, I finally had the pleasure of getting to know the Ranger! I boarded in the early hours of the morning in Almerimar to set sail for Carboneras, south of the Gulf of Vera. Watching the sunrise from the deck is one of the most…
September 16, 2023
After an uncomfortable night of sailing, battling strong winds and waves, the morning sun brought calmer weather to the Alboran Sea. Mother Nature seemed to be in a good mood, granting us the opportunity to spot several pods of common and striped dolphins, as well as various seabirds such as…
September 15, 2023
Finally sailing! We couldn’t leave the harbour yesterday evening because there was a very strong wind, and we had to wait until early morning. Once the wind calmed down, we started sailing towards the west of Alboran Island. Heading towards Alboran Island we passed through the Chella Bank. We were…
September 15, 2023
Today, Oceana is launching an expedition to the Alboran Sea to document fisheries and gather evidence of the impact caused by bottom trawling on vulnerable seabed habitats and iconic species. The data gathered will serve as evidence to show EU decision-makers that bottom trawling in marine protected areas must be…
September 9, 2023
After sleeping one night while sailing southwards, we woke up to another beautiful sunrise. I could never get tired of these sunrises at sea! On our way to the Alboran Sea, we saw more container ships and more fishing vessels than the previous day – a reminder that the sea…
September 8, 2023
Today is my first time on board the Ranger, after being prevented from joining last year’s expedition due to COVID. And, in two words, it’s an impressive vessel! At over 21 metres, it is an imposing yet elegant catamaran. We slept on board, in harbour, rocked by the waves. I…