After the successful launch of National Geographic’s Crittercams, we spent two nights in Torrevieja. The crew were all systems go: Francoise worked on the turtle samples in the lab, repairs to the zodiac, fixing the ship’s autopilot, office work, restocking of supplies, a full complete clean of the ship interior and exterior, and a press conference! The press conference started with Ricardo giving a presentation on Fundacion Biodiversidad’s OASIS project at the port offices and ended with us hosting the press for lunch on the Luis Ginillo.
We set off on the evening of the 16th for Menorca, sailing via the north coast of Ibiza and Mallorca. Our 200 mile trip has been nothing short of incredible. We woke up yesterday morning with a sperm whale close to the boat and shortly after by a fin whale. Never a bad way to start the day! We had flat calm mirror-like waters for the entire trip making ideal spotting conditions. Yesterday afternoon we saw five loggerhead turtles, very close to the boat, with Christian getting underwater footage of two of them.
We are now in Menorca at Cap de Banyos, with maintenance on the go and preparations in full swing for the upcoming experiment: the use of cameras on lobster traps to study their behaviour, to improve the efficiency of lobster catching methods and help mitigate bycatch.