Another successful expedition, another discovery!

 

We are proud to share the story of a scientific expedition to Malpelo Island in Colombia. Part of the expedition was the team from Undersea Hunter alongside the team of National Geographic Pristine Seas.

Here is the story in their own words!

The journey to Malpelo

Hello to all ocean enthusiasts!

What an exciting trip we’ve just came back from!!!

This one was an extreme expedition to Malpelo island in Colombia, supporting the team of National Geographic Pristine Seas. The mission was to celebrate the relatively new protection of the marine area of Malpelo, and for the first time ever, to join forces to explore and survey the whole water column!!!

There were surface cameras floating in various location around the island, scientist divers making transact at various depth & location around the island down to the maximum depth of 40m/130ft, Closed Circuit Rebreather divers diving to 80m/265ft, drop cameras going down to 2000m/6600ft and of course the DeepSee took the twilight zone down to 350m/1100ft.

 

It’s a great feeling to explore the deep where we were the first that laid eyes and discovered new habitats, new species and new behaviours, hosting leading investigators and protectors of our oceans. We had a very intense two weeks on this expedition from which we wanted to make as much as possible with our time there, and we were fairly rewarded for that with amazing discoveries at the deep. We’ve recorded hundreds of Gigabytes on our 4K video camera, made over 3 hours of recorded transacts, discovered various new habitats at the deep and introduced known and new species never seen before in the waters of Malpelo.

On our first day, we’ve discovered huge rock formation at 100m/330ft deep. They were teaming with life. Dozens of groupers, maybe hundreds, were in front of those rocks as if coming to greet us and wish us luck for the rest of the expedition. Waiting long enough in front of the rocks, a school of Amber Jacks will pass like a river also by the hundreds with the same amount of huge Yellow Fin Tunas swimming at amazing speed on top of the sub’s dome.

Going deeper on the following days, we discover a wall, a sheer drop starting at 290m/950ft and we’ve followed it down to 350m/1100ft. There we’ve seen Malpelo first ever to be recorded Prickly shark!!!

The wall had a rich distribution of deep water sponges giving shelter and food to hundreds of deep water fish we’ve surveyed while “crabbing” in front of that huge structure made out of volcanic rock. Coming up we’ve encountered with several Ragged-tooth sharks recorded from 350m/1100ft to 230m/800ft. At the “shallow” part of that habitat we’ve encountered with a ledge-like step on the sandy slope that as we approached it with our lights, there was an endless feeding frenzy of huge Groupers and Morays on Threadfin Bass and Anthias. That high-velocity action kept us almost nailed to the bottom as we didn’t really want to go up and end the dive…

17 dives in 10 days of diving kept us craving for more of Malpelo and even more for those kinds of extreme expeditions. This one was the 6th expedition DeepSee have made with Pristine Seas National Geographic, hoping to have another one soon in another unexplored corner of our ocean…

Here is a short interview with Withney, one of the scientists from National Geographic Pristine Seas.

 

DeepSee will be back to Coco’s island after this trip, we’re sure you wouldn’t want to miss the unparalleled opportunity to be a deep water explorer for a day…

See you soon,

The pilots.

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