Tiger Sharks The New Explorers In Town!

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  • The sharks were employed by the American ocean conservation non-profit Beneath the Waves for a unique mission to map out an area of the Bahamas.
  • The organization has been watching the Tiger sharks behavior in the Bahamas to determine how the marine environment the sharks frequent could be improved.
  •  One of the sharks wore a 360-degree camera on its back making it the fist ever use of a 360-degree camera by a marine animal

Seven Tiger sharks mapped more than 35,500 square miles of seagrass. Which has exceptional carbon-storing properties that scientists hope will aid in the fight against climate change, reported by ATI.

Unique mission

Beneath the Waves, an American ocean conservation nonprofit, employed sharks.

They recently completed an unique mission: mapping out an area of the Bahamas that has now been designated as the world’s largest seagrass meadow.

The sharks were, of course, unaware of their mission, but it was a resounding success, according to a recent Nature study.

Monitoring

Beneath the Waves has been tracking tiger shark behavior in the Bahamas for years.

With the goal of determining how to improve the marine environments that sharks inhabit.

Research preparations

Previously, researchers discovered that tiger sharks spend a significant amount of time looking for prey in seagrass meadows.

They also made excellent research partners for a team hoping to accurately map Earth’s seagrass environments due to their ability to swim about 44 miles per day.

Six of the sharks were fitted with cameras via swivels designed to corrode after 24 hours in salt water.

One shark wore a 360-degree camera, making it the first time a marine animal has used one.

Blue carbon

According to ATI, it is critical for scientists to have an accurate estimate of the amount of seagrass on Earth.

Because seagrass can store carbon for a much longer period of time than most terrestrial plants.

Blue carbon refers to carbon stored in coastal and marine ecosystems.

However, what makes seagrass particularly beneficial is that it stores carbon in the sediment beneath it rather than retaining it itself.

When terrestrial plants die and decompose, they typically release their stored carbon.

“With seagrass, a lot of the carbon ends up down in the soil where it can be trapped for millennia if it’s not disturbed,” Michael Rasheed, director of James Cook University’s Seagrass Ecology Lab, told ABC Australia.

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Source: ATI

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