SEALLIANCE Hope Spots: Cuba

By January 27, 2011 September 16th, 2011 Ocean News

Dr. Sylvia Earle is known as a great underwater explorer, especially in the deep sea, but she is also known for her work to protect marine areas that are important ecological areas. These areas are either crucial habitat for specific species such as Sea Turtles, Sharks, Marine Mammals or they are important areas because of their high biodiversity. Dr. Earle has taken the time to identify specific marine areas that she calls Hope Spots. I had the chance to ask Dr. Earle about why she chose these areas and she said they were chosen because they exhibit beauty and wonders of the Ocean that are still untouched by human activity and that there was a hope the areas could be protected before such activity impacted them.

TheJardines Del La Reina Archipelago, Cuba is one such Hope Spot as it reminds Dr. David Guggenheim of the Caribbean Ocean that existed 30 years ago. In the video below, Dr. Guggenheim speaks about the abundance of sharks on the reefs and compares it to diving experiences elsewhere. He mentions spotting only one large shark in 35 years of diving compared to countless sharks in one dive in Cuba. What is the difference between much of Cuban water and elsewhere? It’s protected. The protection is why there is such an abundance of life. Protection of marine, and freshwater, areas are a key aspect of conserving the marine areas and Hope Spots.

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