Feature story: Exploring pristine seas

Underwater survey equipment.

The National Geographic Pristine Seas initiative is an exploration, research, and media project to find, survey, and help protect the last wild places in the ocean. Marine Biodiversity Hub scientists joined the final two Pristine Seas expeditions of 2014 to Palau (western Pacific) and Rapa Iti and Marotiri, the southernmost islands of French Polynesia in the Austral Archipelago of the South Pacific.

They used pelagic stereo video cameras to survey ocean habitats dominated by large apex predators. The surveys will be used to assist managers in these locations as marine reserves are developed and enhanced.

Image: Manu San Felix, National Geographic Society