Indian Ocean Expedition: Log book
Follow the boat's route in real time
Planning of operations
Post of the day
Resources of the day
Tell me about your expedition
Discovery of the Saya de Malha seagrass beds with the ROV
These underwater meadows, composed of flowering plants and not algae, play an important role in the oceans but they are threatened by pollution, trawling and ocean acidification. Hence the interest in establishing a database during this expedition so that we Seychellois and Mauritians can better understand this environment in order to better manage and protect it.
“Our floats are precious allies in understanding this area of the Indian Ocean. They are certainly expensive equipment, but our approach is now oriented towards a virtuous cycle of recovery, reconditioning and re-commissioning of this expensive equipment with a reduced environmental impact.”
The ROV transects
“We are eager to discover these “sea grass meadows”. At the moment we are at a depth of about 30 metres but we can’t see anything. The sea grass is not very far away anyway, it’s just a matter of time”.
The future of bio plastics.
The idea is to demonstrate how to diversify the economy based on science and innovation, to encourage local entrepreneurs to pursue their ideas. This expedition allows me to look beyond the Seychelles by developing new collaborations. I want to broaden the debate around plastic pollution, show the impact of microfibres on the marine environment and try to change habits. This is the first time I have taken part in an expedition and I am learning a lot.
Photophores and the deep sea
Most organisms that live in lightless environments have photophores. This is a way of either avoiding and escaping predation from other organisms or attracting prey. It acts as a lure. Beyond prey-predator interactions, it is also a means of recognition within the same species in a dark environment. Making light is important and 90% of these organisms are capable of producing light and bioluminescence in these areas of great darkness. This is an essential functional trait that we are studying more and more with special sensors.
The ocean has rights
I am interested in the interaction between the Law of the Sea and marine science, and in the evolution of the Law of the Sea. Being a lawyer among scientists is a challenge, but it is very interesting. Scientific expeditions such as the Saya de Malha expedition can help to find innovative legal solutions to manage regional space.
The vagaries of field research
We were planning four transects today. But there is always a gap between what we plan on paper and what we experience in the field, and I had to arbitrate. However, all the scientists, 80 in total, are currently on deck day and night to multiply the collections, sorting and classification of specimens.
1st dive on Saya de Malha.
With my partner, we dived to 42 meters, with 40 minutes of actual diving on the bottom and 40 minutes of decompression. The bottom was very white and made up of sand with small coral debris. The ground was soft which allowed us to lift and collect elements quite easily. All this was covered with a very rich fauna and flora.