Alps of the undersea
3D-visualisation of the area around the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone. © MAR-ECO
In this area, cool water rich in nutrients collide with warmer Gulf Stream water and provide ideal conditions for production of plankton. The area is also a meeting hot spot of northern and southern migratory species.
The Ridge is one of the last frontiers of science where new species are discovered during research expeditions.
Currently, the most pressing impact is caused by fishing fleets targeting orange roughy and other commercial deep sea species. Orange roughy is extremely vulnerable to overfishing given it reaches maturity late at 20 years old and can live to over 100. Parts of the ridge have suffered severe damage from bottom trawling.
Cephalopod filmed near the mid-Atlantic Ridge © MAR-ECO