15 September 2014
Author: Maxime Zech
A ten-day research expedition in the North Sea has uncovered the underwater world in a mission to show people and politicians that there is more to the North Sea than previously thought. During the expedition, researchers were also surprised at several new discoveries, De Stentor reports.
“We know more about the moon than about our seas” says ocean expert Chris van Assen of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), who organized the ten-day expedition together with the Dive the North Sea Clean foundation.
The expedition aimed to map out the sea’s hidden ecosystems, and to return the public image of the North Sea back to one of nature as well as industry. “The North Sea is also the biggest nature area of The Netherlands”, Van Assen says. “Half of all the oxygen that we breathe in is produced by the oceans. We have to take care of them.”
The expedition did more than map the world of the deep. Divers discovered a type of hard coral on a ship wreck in the distant Dogger Bank, which has never been recorded in these waters before. It is believed to be the Devonshire cup-Coral. They also discovered honeycomb worms, which were previously thought extinct.
For more, go to: www.nltimes.nl/2014/09/15/hard-coral-discovered-deep-north-sea/