3rd Place Underwater Conservation Michael Vogelsang

3rd Place Underwater Conservation

Michael Vogelsang

"Bryde's Whale with Ghost Net"


The Story: We were on the island of Faial with special permission from the local authorities to photograph whales underwater. We already had some good whale encounters when we noticed this Bryde's whale. We were able to determine that there were injuries to the animal's mouth from the zodiac, but we could not identify the cause. Only when we were in the water did we find that the animal was caught in a ghost net. This net had already cut deep into the whale's snout and was longer than the whale itself. It was a really sad sight for us ... In spite of attempts we unfortunately did not succeed in freeing the animal from the net because it was traveling too deep and too fast. If the net cannot be loosened, the whale will perish miserably. The local biologists were informed. With my photo I would like to draw attention to the danger that ghost nets pose to marine life 

Location:  Azores, Portugal

Equipment Used: Nikon 850 Camera, Seacam Housing, Nikkor 16-35mm Lens

Camera Settings: F10, 1/400 sec, ISO 800


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