The Nekton Maldives Mission has discovered a 1,500m-high seamount locally known as “Satho Rahaa” in the Suvadiva Channel in Huvadhoo Atoll.
Suvadiva Channel or Huvadhoo Kandu is the broad channel that separates the northern and central Maldives from the southern atolls. It has long been famous among fishermen as Satho Rahaa regarding a local legend that claims a Japanese scientist was lost while conducting studies in the region. Although there are no research papers published in the Maldives on the Suvadiva Channel, there are some articles that show that the area is very historical for scientists.
During the Nekton Maldives Mission, the team of experts have discovered a seamount at the bottom of the Suvadiva Channel. The seamount is 1,500m high and the top of the seamount is 300m below sea level. The mission spent 12 hours exploring the seamount and gathering data. The submersible used by the Nekton Mission has been unable to be used in the area due to heavy rainfall. Therefore, the team used sonar technology to gather data to depict the shape and length of the seabed in the Suvadiva Channel.
The Nekton Mission is now most interested in discovering the fact that various species of fish thrive near the seabed. Scientists believe the study will provide answers to many of the questions that have been raised about marine life. The Nekton Mission has decided to collect data on 34 seamounts in the waters of the Maldives.
The Nekton Maldives Mission, being conducted from 4th September to 7th October, is undertaking the first systematic survey and sampling of the Maldives from the surface to 1000 metre depths. Almost nothing is known about what is below 30 metres, the vast majority of the country.