The public is invited to join in an ocean exploration of Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument’s seamounts through live-stream.
Watch live-streamed ROV footage from the expedition here.
Now through Dec. 6, researchers with Ocean Exploration Trust have embarked on the E/V Nautilus for their expedition Luʻuaeahikiikapapakū. Returning to the Monument after an expedition in 2018, the E/V Nautilus team is conducting ROV surveys on a chain of seamounts, and documenting whether these underwater mountains support vibrant coral and sponge communities like others in the region.
“As we visit Papahānaumokuākea, the ancestral homeland of the Native Hawaiian people and the largest marine conservation area in the U.S., we gratefully acknowledge generations of Indigenous Hawaiians and today’s stewards of these waters,” officials stated in a press release from National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration.
Ocean Exploration Trust is working closely with Monument collaborators to inform research priorities at sea and from shore, ensure culturally-grounded collection protocols, and connect with local communities through ship-to-shore connections and development of education resources in ‘Ōlelo Hawaiʻi (Hawaiian language).
The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument Native Hawaiian Cultural Working Group nomenclature committee developed the expedition name Luʻuaeahikiikapapakū to reflect the journey to and the work in the papakū, or the ocean floor, which includes surveying and mapping seamounts, and investigating macro-biology and deep-sea rocks as well as the birth of new relationships and collaborative ways of practicing that are inclusive of Kānaka (Native Hawaiians) worldview.
“All of these efforts support opportunities to work with Native Hawaiians and to perpetuate the cultural values, knowledge, and practices of their cultural heritage while advancing modern science and exploration together,” the release states.
The 2021 Nautilus Expedition is sponsored by NOAA Ocean Exploration through the NOAA Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, NASA, Harvard University, National Oceanographic Partnership Program and Ocean Networks Canada.
For more information, visit NautilusLive.org Expeditions page or NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries Ocean Exploration Trust 2021 Expedition page.