Sunsail and Sailors for the Sea Team Up for Global Finprint

A team of scientists is comparing various reefs in the Bahamas to assess the need for shark conservation, supported by Sunsail and Sailors for the Sea.

Sunsail and Sailors for the Sea have teamed up with Global FinPrint on their first expedition in the Abacos, Bahamas. They will assist the group’s global initiative by supporting a team of scientists to compare various characteristics of reefs to see which ecological factors determine the number, types and sizes of sharks and rays present in a specific reef habitat. With this information the team will be able to prioritize areas for future shark conservation projects. The data from each expedition will be made accessible to students, the general public, governments and other scientists through an open-access database, thereby maximizing Global FinPrint’s impact on marine education and conservation.

Marketing Manager, Brittany Weatherby Riley of Sunsail says about the project, “Sunsail is proud to provide our yachts as the platform for this important research helping to ensure the health of the reefs and marine sanctuaries. We place a great deal of interest in what is below the surface of the playground which we inhabit in the charter industry and find it imperative to help maintain and sustain the health of our oceans. As leaders in the charter industry we would encourage all companies to engage with groups who are looking to improve the health of our marine environments in order to ensure unforgettable memories for all those who explore via charter yacht in the future.”

The Global FinPrint project is a team effort that will involve a large number of scientists, conservationists, governments, non-government organizations, divers, seafarers and citizen scientists. The widespread decline of sharks and rays is a significant global environmental issue that requires comprehensive, science-based policies at the domestic and international level. “Helping boaters understand the complex marine health issues beneath our hulls is paramount to healing the ocean,” says R. Mark Davis, President Sailors for the Sea. “It is a great honor to partner with a responsible corporate citizen like Sunsail to support the international research team and collaborators around the world that are filling a critical information gap about the diminishing numbers of sharks and rays.”

Global FinPrint aims to provide both science and public support for these initiatives. It relies on partnerships, such as the new collaboration forged with Sunsail, to execute the most ambitious shark survey ever attempted: sampling hundreds of reefs in five oceans. Sunsail's fleet will serve as floating laboratories taking scientists to reefs in several remote corners of the world, starting with this expedition in the Abacos, Bahamas, to count sharks and rays.

“Global FinPrint’s team is grateful to Sunsail for generously supporting our efforts to survey reefs around the world to learn more about sharks and rays,” says Demian Chapman, Lead Scientist for the Global FinPrint. “It seems appropriate to be casting off together by surveying a reef inside The Bahamas Shark Sanctuary to gather data on what we think will be comparatively well protected, robust shark populations."

Follow along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @GlobalFinPrint.

About Sunsail

For over 40 years Sunsail has led the way in sailing adventures. From pioneering the first flotillas in Greece to building through experience today's choice of the best and most exotic yachting destinations on a custom tailored fleet of Monohulls and Catamarans. Beginners can now enjoy the world's best cruising grounds by hiring a skipper from any Sunsail base. Sunsail strives to provide our customers with the most exciting experience at the greatest possible value. Sunsail brands include Sailing Vacations by Bareboat Charter, Flotillas, Sailing Schools, Events and Yacht Ownership. Sunsail operates in 26 exotic and diverse destinations throughout the globe on a fleet of over 800 yachts and catamarans.

About Sailors for the Sea

Sailors for the Sea is a leading global conservation organization that engages, educates, inspires and activates the sailing and boating community toward healing the ocean. Clean Regattas is its signature program and is the world’s only sustainability certification system for water based events. Through its marine education programs KELP (Kids Environmental Lesson Plans) and monthly article series “Ocean Watch” tens of thousands of boaters learn how to take action to heal the ocean. Sailors for the Sea has Affiliates in Cascais, Portugal and Yokohama, Japan.