Pristine Seas

Updates From the Field

  • Niue Island Expedition

    Niue Island Expedition

    The Pristine Seas team set out to explore the large raised coral atoll of Niue and neighboring submerged atoll of Beveridge Reef.

  • Pristine Seas Your Shot Assignment

    Pristine Seas Your Shot Assignment

    Photographers from National Geographic's Your Shot community participated in an assignment curated by Pristine Seas director Dr. Enric Sala to celebrate the incredible diversity of our oceans this World Oceans Day.

  • Revillagigedo Expedition

    Revillagigedo Expedition

    To improve the understanding of how the entire ecosystem of this archipelago works, the Pristine Seas team will use various tools to explore, scientifically survey, and record the environment around the archipelago.

  • In a Bubble of Air in the Deep Pacific

    In a Bubble of Air in the Deep Pacific

    When you are aboard our three-person submarine you sit inside a completely clear sphere giving unrivaled views and the wonderful feeling of living in a bubble of air in the deep ocean.

  • The Light of Dawn at Clipperton Island

    The Light of Dawn at Clipperton Island

    The team realizes they are getting closer to the island because they can smell the thousands of birds from miles away!

  • Voyage to Clipperton—One of the Most Remote Tropical Islands on Earth

    Voyage to Clipperton—One of the Most Remote Tropical Islands on Earth

    After months of researching, planning, and organizing, we are all on board the dive expedition boat, Argo, here at the dock in Manzanillo, Mexico.

  • Clipperton Island Expedition

    Clipperton Island Expedition

    Clipperton is a wild, remote, and highly unusual place, with deep offshore seamounts that are as of yet unexplored.

  • Galápagos Expedition Continues to Reveal Amazing Creatures. See This Week's Best.

    Galápagos Expedition Continues to Reveal Amazing Creatures. See This Week's Best.

    Head off the beaten track with expedition leader Enric Sala and get a glimpse at life in some of the most remote and remarkable areas of this legendary archipelago.

  • Meet the Majestic Creatures Surrounding a Tiny Island in the Galápagos

    Meet the Majestic Creatures Surrounding a Tiny Island in the Galápagos

    The Pristine Seas team moves north a hundred miles to tiny Wolf Island and finds majestic sharks and rays, curious dolphins, and other graceful performers in the underwater pageant of the Galápagos.

  • Explorers Are Diving the Galápagos. This Is What They're Finding.

    Explorers Are Diving the Galápagos. This Is What They're Finding.

    Birds that don’t fly. Iguanas that deep dive. The latest Pristine Seas expedition is revealing the unique menagerie in the waters of the Galápagos Islands.

  • Galápagos

    Galápagos

    The Pristine Seas team literally dives deeper into this famed archipelago, using a submersible, 360-degree imaging, and other advanced tools to study and document its unique marine environments.

  • Chile Creates the Largest Marine Reserve in the Americas

    Chile Creates the Largest Marine Reserve in the Americas

    The newly protected waters around the Desventuradas Islands contain many marine species found nowhere else on Earth.

  • Protecting the Ross Sea

    Protecting the Ross Sea

    As the Ross Sea garners more interest from the commercial fishing industry, the Pristine Seas team is working in association with the Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition (ASOC) to inspire global leaders to agree to protect this ocean wilderness.

  • Photos: Selvagens Islands Creatures

    Photos: Selvagens Islands Creatures

    In the sea or in the sky, the animals of these Atlantic islands constantly amaze the team.

  • Rogue Wave Reveals Rich Underwater Habitat

    Rogue Wave Reveals Rich Underwater Habitat

    We thrive on diving in wild places and love the feeling of jumping into the water without knowing what’s under the surface. But finding the dive sites is a tricky business.

  • Selvagens Islands

    Selvagens Islands

    The Pristine Seas team explores the Selvagens Islands, conducting among the first surveys of the islands’ underwater ecosystems.

  • Life on the Ice Edge Photos

    Life on the Ice Edge Photos

    The Pristine Seas team traveled to Canada's Baffin Island to document changes in the sea ice there, and how these shifts are affecting local Arctic wildlife. From the sky and on the ice, the team captured images of glaciers, polar bears, birds, and seals.

  • Last Ice Area Project

    Last Ice Area Project

    In what scientists are predicting will be the last ice area of the Arctic, the team documents how the disappearance of sea ice is affecting Inuit communities and local wildlife.

  • Seychelles

    Seychelles

    Hawksbill turtles and inquisitive groupers trailed the Pristine Seas team through an Indian Ocean paradise in the Seychelles’ outer islands.

     

  • Rapa Iti

    Rapa Iti

    The southernmost islands of French Polynesia have long been a respite for nature, but an expedition showed that the effects of fishing are reaching even these remote waters.

  • Palau

    Palau

    Recognizing the need to ensure the sustainability of its marine resources, Palau intends to protect 80 percent of its waters.

  • Mozambique

    Mozambique

    Home to giants such as manta rays and whale sharks, southern Mozambique has some of the healthiest reefs in East Africa.

  • New Caledonia

    New Caledonia

    The Pristine Seas team surveyed large parts of the Coral Sea that are pledged for protection but have barely been explored.

  • Franz Josef Land

    Franz Josef Land

    High in the Arctic, a team of scientists and filmmakers compared the current state of Franz Josef Land with exploration records from the late 1800s.

  • Desventuradas

    Desventuradas

    Far off the coast of Chile, these lonely islands are among the most mysterious places in the eastern Pacific.

  • Gabon

    Gabon

    Diving among huge oil rigs that are now home to artificial reefs, the team helped inspire Gabon to protect its waters as it protects its land.

  • Pitcairn

    Pitcairn

    The expedition team encountered vibrant marine life around the famous islands that were home to the Bounty mutineers and Essex survivors.

  • Salas y Gómez

    Salas y Gómez

    Around the remote islands of Salas y Gómez, the team carried out the first systematic survey of underwater life—from coral and algae to fish and sharks.

  • Cocos Island

    Cocos Island

    Though the seamounts around Cocos Island were mostly unknown to humans, this expedition found that they are rich feeding grounds for marine creatures.

  • Northern Line Islands

    Northern Line Islands

    The density of sharks and healthy reef communities here revolutionized the team’s ideas about how much life a truly pristine sea could support.

  • Southern Line Islands

    Southern Line Islands

    The southern Line Islands, among the most isolated atolls on Earth, help offer a baseline model for healthy coral reefs.

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The last of the pristine seas offer a fascinating glimpse into our past and an inspiring vision for the future. In Pristine Seas: Journeys to the Ocean’s Last Wild Places, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala takes readers on a dazzling journey to ten of these astounding locations, showing what we have to gain by protecting our seas.

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