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Old 16-12-2014, 01:50   #1
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Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

Hi,

Bit of a strange request but here goes

We are a group of marine researchers studying manta and mobula ray populations in the Indian Ocean and are searching for enthusiastic yachters to help us conduct a research expedition in mid-2015. We are searching for a yacht that could be used as a research platform - basically a vessel that could sleep an additional 4-5 researchers for a 3 week cruise departing from and returning to Sri Lanka. Our plan is to follow a local fishing vessel out to sea (anywhere between 200-1,000 nautical miles over ~20 days), document their fishing techniques and place satellite tags on manta and mobula rays in order to track their movement patterns.

To give you some background, we are part of a UK registered charity (The Manta Trust - Manta Trust | Conservation through Research, Awareness and Education) carrying out marine research and conservation on a global scale in collaboration with various universities, including the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in the US. You can find more information about this particular project in the following PDF: http://www.mantatrust.org/wp-content...-Sri-Lanka.pdf

Please do contact me through this forum (or via email - daniel (at) manta trust . org) if you are interested or if you can point me in the right direction!

Thanks for your time.

Cheers!
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Old 16-12-2014, 08:46   #2
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Re: Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

My first thought is that you will need to find out the speeds of the fishing boats that you plan on following. A sailboat may or may not be fast enough to keep up.

I wish you good luck with your research project.
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Old 16-12-2014, 08:54   #3
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Re: Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
My first thought is that you will need to find out the speeds of the fishing boats that you plan on following. A sailboat may or may not be fast enough to keep up.

I wish you good luck with your research project.
This is a good point. Our experience in the area, having been chased by aggressive Sri Lankan fishermen for 12 long hours while transiting between Thailand and Sri Lanka, is they can do no more than 7 knots of speed. This is for the average wooden fishing vessel that carries around 6-7 fishermen.

Your larger sailboat, one that could carry the extra people you mention, should be able to keep pace. Definitely worth asking, though.

Cheers.

Dhillen
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Old 16-12-2014, 09:03   #4
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Re: Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

Hi,

Thanks for the messages. Yes their top speed tends to be around 7-8 knots actually so not a problem for a sailboat! Plus it would be arranged and agreed beforehand with the fishermen that we would follow them for this purpose (contacts have already been established).

Curious to hear more as to why you were chased by Sri Lankan fishermen?

Cheers,
Daniel
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Old 16-12-2014, 09:56   #5
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Re: Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

Opportune piracy. I was alone on board with my wife and they tried to ram us and board us several times. I threatened them with my machete and hid the wife down below so they couldn't see her.

Incidentally, she spent the entire time on the SSB (Single Side Band radio) calling out "Mayday" on all emergency frequencies and got.....nothing. Proving unequivocally that you are on your own out there.

We managed to outrun them because with all sails up and full power we were able to do 7.5 knots to their 7.4 knots. Really it was that close.

When night fell we doused all lights and eluded them easily because we had radar and they did not.

Did I mention this was our honeymoon?

One more thing, if I had carried a firearm and not a machete there would have been seven less Sri Lankan fisherman cluttering up the landscape.

Cheers.

Dhillen
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Old 17-12-2014, 14:08   #6
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Re: Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

Glad your safe Dhillen. Sure a great honeymoon story for the grandkids , and everyone ever married .
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Old 19-12-2014, 12:27   #7
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Re: Searching for a yacht in the Indian Ocean to help with marine research!

Holy Carp, that is a freaky story. Thanks for sharing.
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