Oceana expedition to Alboran Sea uncovers underwater oasis and ‘wasteland’

Gathered data will also support advocacy efforts to ban bottom trawling in European Marine Protected Areas Single-use plastics, abandoned fishing gear, and untreated waste most common pollutants found in seven-day expedition Madrid – Oceana concluded its expedition to the Alboran Sea (South of Spain), where the organisation gathered first-hand evidence of plastic pollution and bottom … Read more

Huge trawl net!

Unlike yesterday, we started off with early hour winds that died off throughout the early afternoon, giving us again an almost flat sea. We first sailed to the top of the Chella bank to check some possible trawl marks. On our way, we spotted several fishing boats, including two trawlers and one pot fishing boat. … Read more

Fantastic finding: a coralligenous reef!

Though the weather forecast was yet for another windy day, we woke up to a gentle breeze and a nearly flat sea. Our first first scuba dive was in an area with maerl and coralligenous seafbed bording the coastal MPA of Seco de los Olivos. Later we moved a little deeper to look for trawl marks. … Read more

Another windy day

Another windy day and we can’t go too far off, rather we decided to stay close to shore near Roquetas de Mar.  Our first scuba dive was in a seagrass barrier reef, where we found that trawlers have destroyed parts of the meadow. Though older, the marks were still very visible. In the deeper areas, … Read more

Very low biodiversity

The winds picked up today, but the Ranger resisted and we still were able to work, albeit with minor changes on where we’d dive. In all, we conducted several ROV dives and one scuba dive. We took a couple short “inspection dives” at various points not far off the coast of Almerimar. This area is … Read more

Towards Chella Bank

We sailed towards Chella Bank to look for signs of trawlers at the top of the seamount. Despite the poor weather, we were able to conduct and ROV dive down to 100 m. From what we see, it seems that some trawlers are using a narrow, sandy path between two reefs dotted with sea pens … Read more

Celebrating World Ocean Day

Happy World Ocean Day from the Ranger! Today, the ocean gifted us with an escort of common dolphins riding our bow waves as we made our way to the Marine Protected Area (MPA), Maro-Cerro Gordo, off the coast of Almuñecar. Our records show that trawlers destroyed a large part of the seagrass meadow in this … Read more

Setting sail!

Aside from a handful of small surveys and maintenance runs, it’s been nearly 600 days since the last time the Ranger had gone out to sea. Before, we had at least one or more expedition per year for 15 years in-a-row, but the global pandemic unfortunately put an end to that, with our last expedition … Read more