I am pleased to share that I will be releasing a collection in collaboration with Saving The Blue to raise funds for their vital shark research. I was fortunate to spend two weeks at sea with some of the Saving The Blue team in 2021, including Annie & Tristan Guttridge, the president and vice-president of the organisation. They have an infectious passion for sharks and conservation, we spent many a day discussing 'Saving The Blue' and the incredible work they are doing over in the Bahamas. Saving the Blue is a registered non-profit organisation and they are on an important mission.
"To Recover And Restore A Variety Of Threatened Marine Species, While Connecting People To Ocean Wildlife. We Aim To Promote Green, Sustainable Living, Through Education And Outreach, Both In Person And Online."
I wanted the first piece to showcase the three main study species that their research efforts are focused on. The hammerhead shark, silky shark, and sawfish.
For many divers great hammerheads are synonymous with the Bahamas, these large bodied sharks are listed as critically endangered world wide. With wide ranges they are under threat largely due to human activities such as targeted fishing and fisheries bycatch. Little is known about how great hammerheads use the Bahamas archipelago and Saving The Blue are aiming to uncover more about their relationship with the unaltered and vast habitats of Andros island.
The silky shark is a pelagic, highly migratory shark. It has an appetite for tuna and this unfortunately puts them at high risk from commercial fishing activities. It is estimated that 2 million individuals are landed each year in bycatch from fishing activities, putting a huge pressure on this species. To further protect silky sharks we need to understand more about their social behaviour, ecology and biology - and this is exactly what Saving The Blue are aiming to do.
A sawfish might look like something made up in a story book if you aren't a shark fanatic, but the small toothed sawfish is one of the most threatened fish species in the world. In Andros they have recorded sightings of sawfish through various life stages and it does seem that there is a viable population here. Saving The Blue are working to find out more about the sawfish in Andros and the Bahamas through community outreach, research and citizen science.
The second piece I created in this great hammerhead silhouette shows a reef scene filled with marine life found in the Bahamas and Caribbean seas. I wanted to show the important ties between sharks and the ecosystems they inhabit, by reflecting the life that sharks support.
You can find out more about all these amazing projects here
. This art collection will donate 20% of profits to Saving The Blue to support their ongoing research and conservation efforts, you can find these designs both as art prints and clothing!