The SeaKeepers DISCOVERY Yachts Program is our foremost initiative in accomplishing our mission and goals. The program is comprised of scientific expeditions, instrument deployments, and educational outreach events. SeaKeepers collaborates with numerous organizations, academic institutions, and government agencies in order to accomplish its DISCOVERY Yacht missions. SeaKeepers staff work closely with yacht owners and crew to coordinate research and outreach activities that reflect the yacht owner’s ocean-related interests. The degree of participation can vary from an afternoon outreach trip with children to even a ten-minute instrument deployment while en route to your next port to week-long expeditions with a team of expert researchers. Vessel owners who generously donate time on their yachts to the SeaKeepers DISCOVERY Yachts Program may qualify for tax benefits to the extent of the law and will be honored at SeaKeepers events, featured on the SeaKeepers website and recognized for their support of research and conservation efforts in the SeaKeepers newsletter.

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Past DISCOVERY Yachts Expeditions

Scientist-Led Expeditions

Scientific expeditions provide yacht owners, guests and crew the opportunity to participate in ongoing research while engaging with influential, well-known marine scientists. The largest expense, and often limiting factor, in ocean research, is access to an at-sea research platform. Using member yachts, SeaKeepers works with experts in the marine science and oceanography fields to promote and facilitate groundbreaking research.  Each scientific expedition is unique and is organized with both the science and yacht in mind.

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Education & Outreach

SeaKeepers outreach events have focused around marine wildlife, instrument deployments, plastic pollution, sustainability practices and more. SeaKeepers staff works closely with the yacht owner to determine what type of outreach and with what group will be most appropriate.

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Instrument Deployments

SeaKeepers works with a number of institutions, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and Argo, to make ongoing oceanographic measurements. The collection of consistent and accurate data is extremely important for oil spills and marine debris accumulation analyses; weather and hurricane prediction models; quality control tests on satellites; and an overall better understanding of the marine environment. It is vital that the global instrument arrays are well distributed; private vessels achieve this along routes which are not typically traveled. Currently, SeaKeepers employs the use of two types of devices – SeaKeepers Drifters and Argo Floats.  These instruments have been designed to be scientifically productive and efficient while minimally invasive to the environment.

Baited remote underwater video surveys (BRUVs) catch the oceans top predators on camera to obtain important information about the populations of these globally threatened species, in order to drive shark and ray conservation through research and policy.

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Citizen Science

Citizen science expeditions offer an opportunity for vessels to get involved in smaller-scale marine research initiatives. These expeditions do not require scientists to be aboard, but they permit vessel owners and crew to participate in ongoing research projects which depend on the participation of non-scientists within the community. One of our main projects supported by citizen scientists is Biscayne Bay Water Water (BBWW), a community-based initiative which utilizes volunteers with boats to help collect water samples in order to monitor water quality in Biscayne Bay. The program was developed and is managed by the UF/IFAS Sea Grant Extension Program in Miami-Dade County.

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There are many people around the world who use their vessels to forward marine research, education, and conservation. Each year SeaKeepers recognizes four external programs that demonstrate similar values to the SeaKeepers mission and are making an effort to positively impact the marine environment.

DISCOVERY Detectives

Investigating the underwater world is vital to ocean conservation, and SeaKeepers DISCOVERY Detectives can help influence SeaKeepers research and ocean conservation initiatives by capturing both positive and negative aspects of the marine environment.  Whether it’s bleached corals on a struggling reef or a pod of active, healthy whales, we want to see it.  DISCOVERY Detectives are at the forefront of exploration and can identify marine concerns and successes.

Vessels of all sizes can get involved at this entry level of DISCOVERY Yacht programming by becoming a DISCOVERY Detective. Projects are not time sensitive and provide valuable feedback by collecting and supplying visual data for our media library around specific topics. Vessels sign up with SeaKeepers to document marine encounters or areas of concern during their travels.


2015-2016 Exclusive Partnership


Global  Yacht Services Partner