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The Uruguayan Navy’s ROU 23 “Maldonado” ship supports the operation of National Geographic Pristine Seas in the South Atlantic

Members of the National Geographic Pristine Seas, the Cetcean Conservation Organization (OCC), which had already honored Uruguayan naval aviation, and representatives of that country traveled from the port of La Paloma on the naval ship ROU 23 Maldonado on an expedition to conduct scientific research in oceanic areas before the uruguayan coast.

The area studied includes coral reefs and virtually unexplored underwater canyons, which are an important habitat for resources such as hake, groupers, sharks, tuna, octopus, crabs and deep-sea lobsters.

We are very excited to finally be in Uruguay and to work with national scientists to help protect the Uruguayan Sea, said Alex Muoz, director of National Geographic’s Pristine Seas program for Latin America and expedition leader.

The international team will produce a scientific report on the expedition that will be presented to the government, the municipalities of Maldonado and Rocha (who, along with the Navy, are co-sponsoring the event), the scientific community and the public. As usual, National Geographic will also produce a documentary about this expedition. Surface and deep-sea cameras are used, which initially do not prevent the use of marine agents, although shots from drones cannot be ruled out.

The “Maldonado” is a former Wangerooge of the type 722, which was launched in 1970 for the Navy of the then Federal Republic of Germany under the name of Nordeney as a deep-sea and rescue tug. It was incorporated into the Uruguayan National Navy in late 2002 and classified locally as a hydrographic and oceanographic vessel, although it is frequently assigned to patrol missions. (Javier Bonilla)

Photo: ROU 23 Maldonado of the Uruguayan Navy.

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