Sea change: underwater volcanic paradise springs back to life

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Sea change: underwater volcanic paradise springs back to life

FREE TO READ | New photos of remote sea mountain that had been decimated for lobster show it is thriving

Journalist

More than a decade after a remote sea mountain was closed to fishing fleets, Greenpeace divers have “rediscovered” a rich variety of marine life re-colonising the Vema Seamount biodiversity hot spot nearly 1,600km off the coast of Cape Town.

Seamounts are ancient volcanic mountains which rise hundreds or thousands of metres from the sea floor to create ideal shelter and feeding spots for a wide variety of sea life.

The Vema Seamount – which lies outside SA’s economic and territorial waters – was once exploited heavily for rock lobsters by local and foreign fishing fleets, but was closed to fishing in 2007 under a regional agreement between member nations of the South East Atlantic Fisheries Organisation...

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