On-board Diary: Crossing from Seco de los Olivos seamount to the Gulf of Cadiz

Author: Silvia García
Date: July 3, 2010



Yesterday we set sail from Seco seamount to the Gulf of Cadiz, where we’ll continue our work to study the seabeds in front of Doñana, area proposed for protection, thanks to its coral reefs and the richness and uniqueness of its soft seabeds.

We entered the Bay of Algeciras at 7am, and we filmed various ships refueling using a method known as “bunkering”, a very common practice in these waters that consists of transferring the fuel from one ship, known as a “floating petrol station”, to another. When this is done on the high seas, it is considered illegal by international legislation because of the environmental risks it involves.

Later on, we head towards Rota, which will take us roughly 7 hours of sailing. We take advantage to observe the cetaceans that live in these waters, although the waves make it difficult to see them. In the end, we were lucky and were able to observe a small group of common dolphins that came up to the bow and especially a young specimen that was being escorted by the rest of the group. It seemed as if they were teaching the baby to swim and jump close to the boat.