Blog Archives

Dive into the World of Sharks with Sharks4Kids

Mission Blue is proud to partner with Sharks4Kids!  By: Jillian Morris Students in Bimini, The Bahamas snorkeling with Caribbean reef sharks (c) Jillian Morris At Sharks4Kids, our goal is to create the next generation of shark advocates through education, outreach and adventure. We take students underwater to see sharks first-hand and combine all three aspects of our program to provide an incredible, eye-opening experience.  We spend a lot of time in the Bahamas which is considered a sanctuary for sharks and the “shark diving capital of the world.” It’s extremely important for local students to see these remarkable animals up close and understand why sharks are valuable not only for the environment, but also the economy. Kids are the future guardians for these animals and making a connection to them is critical for future conservation efforts.…
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Journey to the Sea: Turtles Unite the Choroni + Chuao Hope Spot

To view the article in Spanish, click here.  By: Shilpi Chhotray, Mission Blue Communications Strategist  February marks the beginning of sea turtle nesting season on the Venezuelan coastline. For anyone who has witnessed sea turtle hatchlings find their way to the ocean, you know these little marine creatures are up to an enormous challenge. Not only do they have to conquer several meters of sand to get to the sea without any interference, once they are in the ocean, they are up against the risk of pollution, entanglement from fishing gear, and injury from boat propellers. Sea turtles may have been around since the time of the dinosaurs (110 million years!) but their population is in grave decline. It’s safe to say, sea turtles can use our help. …
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Dodging Disney: Bahamians Seek Science to Save the Egg Island Hope Spot

By: Shilpi Chhotray, Mission Blue Communications Strategist (c) Theo Linn “Tourists from around the world come to see an untouched Bahamas. Meanwhile, the government says that cultivating high-volume, high-impact deals with cruise lines will bring local jobs. In reality few locals are hired to staff the cruise lines’ “private islands” and these fantasy terraforming projects naturally conflict with efforts to promote local, more lucrative eco-tourism. If Egg Island is designated a marine protected area, the community will see pretty quickly that the income-earning opportunities for eco-tourism far outstrip the earning potential of the average cruise port employee.” Theo Linn is an American attorney and resident of Russell Island, the closest community to uninhabited Egg Island. He recently assisted Bahamian colleague, Holly Peel, in a major battle against Disney Cruise Line. …
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Hope Spot on the Brink of Irrevocable Change

Our partner Henley Spiers reflects on his recent trip to the George Town Harbour Hope Spot! By: Henley Spiers A Queen Angelfish hides out in the wreck of the Balboa. (c) Henley Spiers I recently returned from Grand Cayman, home of the George Town Harbour Hope Spot and a place which has long been on my diving bucket list. For tourists, these islands are a stress-free haven of sunny white sand beaches and clear blue waters. Beneath the surface, however, a war is being waged over the future of this tropical paradise. George Town Harbour may be home to some of the most famous and accessible reefs around the island, but a project to build a new cruise ship pier threatens to decimate this underwater ecosystem.…
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Dr. Sylvia Earle: Can Marine Migratory Species Thrive in the Face of Consumption?

We are proud to collaborate with James Ketchum, shark expert at UC Davis and core member of the MigraMar network. MigraMar is committed to conducting scientific research to better understand and safeguard healthy populations of marine migratory species in the Eastern Pacific. For the past decade, James has studied shark ecology in the Gulf of California and shark movement patterns in Malpelo Island in Colombia and the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador. He is hopeful that his work will provide answers to where, why, and how sharks move and develop an alternative method for marine conservation with application to other regions and environments. Learn more about the important work of MigraMar from Dr. Sylvia Earle below! By: Dr. Sylvia Earle  © MigraMar Our Earth is defined by an ocean that was once considered unfathomable in its depths and diversity.…
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3 Million Tons of Cosmetics in the Ocean? The Mayan Riviera Hope Spot Dives into Action

By: Shilpi Chhotray, Mission Blue Communications Strategist What used to be small fishing villages and an undeveloped coastline, the Mayan Riviera boasts stunning beaches, a diverse portfolio of dive sites for scuba divers, and high-end luxury resorts. The Mayan Riviera is part of the Mesoamerican Reef (MAR), which contains the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere, stretching nearly 700 miles from the northern tip of the Yucatán Peninsula down through the Honduran Bay Islands. Located in the north of the MAR are the coasts of Quintana Roo, which includes popular island destinations like Cozumel and the Banco Chinchorro atoll. The Yucatán Peninsula alone draws in adventure goers from around the world for cave diving in the many cenotes or sinkholes that are unique to this part of the coast (6,000!).  …
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Patagonia’s Wild Depths

Vreni Häusserman- 2016 Rolex Award recipient is a German biologist exploring marine life in the Patagonian fjords, located in the south of Chile.  © Vreni Häusserman Vreni Häussermann remembers the exact moment she fell in love with the deserted southern fjords of Chilean Patagonia that she now strives to protect. On a research trip in 1997, she and her research partner and later husband, Günter Försterra, happened upon an unusual landscape of stormy seas and snow-capped mountains. For Häussermann, “it was absolutely obvious that this was the most exciting place in the country to study.” Not everyone would share her eagerness. Chilean Patagonia is challenging terrain to explore: the maze of fjords, channels and islands (the coast stretches 90,000 km, though the distance from north to south as the crow flies is just 1,500 km) is home to tempestuous winds and intense storms.…
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Experience the Underwater World with Scubashooters

We are proud to partner with Scubashooters! By: Marino Palla, Scubashooters Underwater photographers are passionate lovers of the sea. They have the power to capture moments and in the process create change. This in turn gives them the ability to raise awareness, showcase the beauty, document the health and well-being of our ocean environment.  Many have the skill, desire and talent to capture creative, inspiring and thought-provoking imagery.  Many will go to great lengths, travel to remote locations and spend a great deal of their time and income pursuing their passion.   Our seas are in big danger and the survival of many marine species are in jeopardy. Much of this can be attributed to unsustainable fishing practices. Years ago many countries had fish free diets.…
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Saving the Ocean’s Gentle Giants

We are proud to partner with Kerstin Forsberg- 2016 Rolex Award Recipient!  @ Getty Images, Martin StrmiskaWith their seven-metre wingspans, giant manta rays are a captivating sight as they glide through the water. “They are just majestic,” says Lima-based conservation biologist Kerstin Forsberg of the iconic species she became determined to protect after discovering the extent of their vulnerability.   The tropical marine ecosystems in northern Peru support the country’s greatest marine biodiversity, giving life to more than 500 marine species. Taking advantage of the nutrient-rich waters is one of the world’s largest regional populations of giant mantas (Manta birostris), estimated to number over 650.   Giant mantas, which are plankton filterers, are classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), with an “elevated risk of extinction”.…
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Citizen Science Supports Protection in the Moreton Bay Hope Spot

By: Shilpi Chhotray, Mission Blue Communications Strategist  Citizen Science Supports Protection in the Moreton Bay Hope Spot “The citizen scientists in the Moreton Bay Hope Spot are living proof that the ocean is a big blue magnet that unites people who care. Their important work is benefitting the human and aquatic inhabitants of greater Brisbane by making a strong case for continued protection of this Hope Spot. Thank you to the citizens of Moreton Bay for collaborating and contributing data in the effort to protect and restore the blue heart of the planet. You are great cause for hope!” – Dr. Sylvia Earle The Moreton Bay community is a model example of how robust citizen science programs help ignite support and ongoing passion for marine protected areas.…
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"With knowing comes caring." - Dr. Sylvia Earle