Although some mythical expeditions of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and toured these shores and invertebrates collected in their funds , very little is currently known about the biodiversity , distribution and composition of the benthos of the shelf and slope of northwest Africa , one of the areas most productive global ocean and where major international fisheries develop . This ignorance is even more dramatic in the case of deep water, hosting some of the most diverse ecosystems and most vulnerable to the Metro and the fishing fleets move slowly. Since 2004 research vessels Viscount Dr. Fridtjof Nansen Eza and have carried out 12 research cruises in the area under the influence of Marina Canary Current ( CCLME Region ) whose objectives are the study found epibenthos . The results of these campaigns will provide a first overview of the biodiversity of benthic ecosystems occupying funds northwest African coast

Since the Challenger in 1878 visited the coast of northwest Africa, numerous expeditions and how Travailleur Talisman of the Valdivia, the ships of Prince Albert of Monaco, Princesse Alice I and II and Hirondelle II, and the Michael Sars and Discovery, among many others, have collected marine fish and invertebrates in these funds. From the mid-twentieth century, these mythical expeditions were added others, such as the Atlantide or Calypso, toured the Gulf of Guinea, the islands of Cape Verde and the Canary, or as the Dutch campaigns CANCAP and French Balgim-84, more recently, have been sampled in these waters looking all faunal expand knowledge, and eco-systemic biogeographic region.

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