A normal day starts in the expedition. We prepare our equipment to dive near a small islet to the south of the Aland Islands. After breakfast, we lower the two dinghies onto the water and load all the materials. One of the high points of this immersion is a small colony of grey seals. Generally, these animals avoid underwater photographers and flee when they see us.
Author: Enrique Talledo – Video camera Date: May 15, 2012
This is my second day on board the Hanse Explorer, after the new photographers and camera operators have arrived. After my great experience last year, I find again an expedition crew that work perfectly and try to give their best.
We are in Finland, and the day starts with a routine task, dropping the underwater robot (ROV) into the cold, dark waters of the Baltic Sea. It will be immersed several times throughout the day while technicians, biologists and the heads of the expedition follow every detail of the scarce animal life that appears on the screens.
Author: Xavier Pastor - Baltic Sea Expedition leader Date: May 14, 2012
Today has been a day of work in harbour. The Hanse Explorer was alongside in Helsinki port, and some members of our team, led by Hanna Paulomäki, attended a Baltic Sea Seminar organized by the Baltic Sea Action Group, a Finnish NGO dedicated to get commitments from different stakeholders (government institutions, industry, other NGOs) to carry out initiatives to improve the status of this sea. The Seminar was opened by the President of Finland, Sauli Niinistö.
Author: Claus Koch - Dive Coordinator Date: May 12, 2012
At around 06:00 this morning we lifted the anchor and were ready to leave the relative calm waters of our anchorage, to set out to continue our rov operations in the EEZ (Economic Exclusive Zone). Very quickly we realized the weather had not really improved enough to safely launch the rov. By 07:00 we were anchored again.
Author: Ricardo Aguilar - Research Director Date: May 11, 2012
We normally say that the weather gives us a rest when it is improving after many days of bad weather. But in this case is the opposite. We have rested only one day in the last 18 and the bad weather has obliged us to stop for a while.
Author: Gorka Leclercq - Videographer and diver Date: May 10, 2012
Today we planned to dive with the ROV near the Hanko Peninsula (FIN), but the military authorities in Finland, have not allowed us to submerge the ROV in its territorial waters, so we decided to head to exclusive economic zone waters for our work.
Author: Carlos Minguell - Photographer and diver Date: May 9, 2012
Our destination today was several points in the Northern Baltic Proper. ROV started to work on a bottom of loose rocks below 30 m, with almost no mussels and even less fish: none at all. It looked like a submarine quarry, so there wasn’t much work for the scientists to do.
Author: Jesús Molino - Diver and Deck coordinator Date: May 8, 2012
Today’s goal is to find, using the ROV, a group of small mountains that rise from 50 to 15 m deep, checking that they really exist and can be filmed. We reach our first stop, the ship drops anchor and after a quick breakfast we start to work. The ROV has some trouble surfacing which is solved by technicians.
Author: Xavier Pastor - Baltic Sea Expedition leader Date: May 7, 2012
In the past few days, Oceana has been working in the area around the Klints Bank, in the center of the Baltic Proper and in the shallow areas east of the Island of Gotland, to identify biological communities. We plan to provide this information to the Swedish Government so they can designate it as a protected area.