Category Winner and Underwater Photographer of the Year 2020.
Massive and mysterious habitats, icebergs are dynamic kingdoms that support marine life.
As they swing and rotate slowly through polar currents, icebergs fertilize the oceans by carrying nutrients from land that spark blooms of phytoplankton, fundamental to the carbon cycle.
During an expedition in the Antarctic Peninsula with filmmaker Florian Fischer and free diver Guillaume Néry, we explored and documented the hidden face of this iceberg where crabeater seals have taken up residence among icebergs that drift at the whim of polar currents.
Mar Sem Fim (“Endless Sea” in English) is a Brazilian yacht that was shipwrecked, sunk and subsequently got frozen in ice in Maxwell Bay of Ardley Cove, Antarctica, about 1,200 kilometres south of the tip of South America, in April 7th, 2012.
The yacht that belonged to the famed Brazilian journalist and entrepreneur João Lara Mesquita, was manned by four crew who were filming a documentary off the Antarctic coast when the boat capsized.
Strong winds in excess of 100-kilometer per hour had tossed the boat from one side to the other “like a bucking bronco in a rodeo,” according to one crew member.
With their vessel trapped in ice, the crew radioed for help and was received by the Chilean navy in the base in Bahia Fildes, in Antarctica.
All four researchers were eventually rescued but bad weather delayed the process by two days.
João Lara Mesquita, who was also in the yacht, wrote in his blog:
“Then, with strong winds and high waves, the boat Frei came to us. Our evacuation was epic.
Waves of more than 1.5 meters and winds over 40 knots made the boat jump from one side to another, like a bucking bronco. When it got close, each of us … threw ourselves into the arms of three Chilean crew members. Fortunately all went safely.”