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The Argo is back from an exciting special expedition to Malpelo, Colombia — which included exploring a seamount 70 miles northwest of the island that has never previously been seen by human eyes.
As we drifted down to the seamount’s peak at 150m/500ft, what we discovered was simply astonishing! The bottom was completely covered in brittle stars, huge groups of massive groupers, scorpionfish, jellynose, anthias and threadfin bass that seemed larger than life. At least 8 prickly sharks wandered the summit, and schools of 20 hammerheads came to pay us a visit.
At Malpelo Island proper, we encountered an extremely nutrient-dense thermocline that was heavily charged with plankton. Descending down we had numerous run-ins with the ragged tooth shark at depths of 200-300m (660-1000ft). We also saw individual hammerheads scanning the bottom, large groupers and scorpionfish, jellynose and goose fish in abundance. On our shallower dives to 90m (300ft) we saw torpedo rays, hammerheads, baitfish and at one point a ragged-tooth shark.
This project was jointly led by the Malpelo Foundation and Conservation International. Although we were challenged with some extreme conditions in terms of current, wind and swell, the DeepSee team managed to overcome all obstacles and meet our goals.
This 12-day project was fast-paced, exhilarating and so rewarding. We are thrilled to be a part of making yet another mark in history with the DeepSee submarine!