Monday, October 12, 2015

Verde island passage in the Philippines. Philippines' research and protection on marine life

Some say the Verde island passage in the Philippines holds the world's most diverse marine ecosystem. Scientists have studied in the region, to help establish marine-protected areas, and solve serious pollution problems menacing the fragile reef system there.

Ecosystems that have existed for centuries – but until now have been unknown to man. The Philippines' Verde island passage is in the middle of what's known as the coral triangle. An area that scientists say is the heart of marine life.

This area here is called the Devil's Point, and it's part of the Verde Island Passage, which is believed to be the center of the center of marine biodiversity. But these are hardly untouched waters. There's a thriving fishing community around here. There's also a lot of diving resorts. But scientists from the California Academy of Sciences are going deep into some 250 feet of what are literally uncharted waters.

One by one, they vanish deep into the ocean, to depths no man has ever been, where sunlight starts to dissipate. They're calling it the twilight zone. Most divers go down to a depth not exceeding 100 feet about 30 meters. But these divers go as much as four times deeper.

And since there are only a handful of them who are qualified to dive this deep, down in the ocean, they have to multi-task.

Lighting each other's paths while swimming… Collecting specimens… And on top of it all, documenting the expedition.

And yet, terry and his team of researchers keep coming back.

And that, ultimately, is why they've ventured to the unknown… Unlocking the mysteries of the twilight zone and beyond.


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