- New Wreck Discovery May Be Legendary Pirate Treasure Ship
- 2,000 Year Old Roman Shipwreck Discovered with Food Intact
- Wobbegong Shark to Reside Permanently at Western Australian Desalinization Plant
A vessel discovered off the coast of Tonga has created a stir in the local community, as speculation is circulating that the wreckage is that of the French-built Port-au-Prince, a pirate vessel that was reportedly carrying a substantial cache of copper, silver, gold, and iron that was looted from British ships in 1806. Straying from its mission of piracy while in pursuit of whales, the Port-au-Prince veered into Tongan waters, enraging the local king of the island, who seized the ship and slaughtered all but four of the pirate crew. After relieving the cargo hold of iron, a valuable resource to the island, the Port-au-Prince was set alight and sunk with the remaining treasure on board. Several people have claimed to have discovered the wreckage of the Port-au-Prince over the years, but as yet, none have produced any significant evidence. The government of Tonga anticipates a treasure hunting frenzy should it actually be proven that this is indeed the lost pirate ship.
After multiple reports of fishermen finding pieces of pottery in their nets, an investigation revealed what may be one of Italy’s most well-preserved shipwrecks, dated to be at least 2,000 years old. The wreck is thought to be the remains of a Roman-era commercial vessel, based on more than 200 amphorae, a type of clay jar that was used for transporting perishable goods, still filled with food products that were completely intact, including fish, wine, oil, and grain. Researchers believe that the ship’s resting place in the muddy seafloor is responsible for keeping the artifacts so well preserved.
A newly constructed desalinization plant in Western Australia stumbled upon a most unlikely guest — a wobbegong shark. The wobbegong is a bottom-dwelling species of carpet shark, commonly found in the waters of Australia and the Indo-Pacific region. They are absolutely harmless to humans unless provoked or stepped on, an occurrence that can happen regularly due to their excellent camouflage. Maintenance workers at the Binningup plant discovered the wobbegong in the intake tank last November, where attempts to catch and release the animal safely have all failed. Until a solution arises, the wobbegong will call the Binningup desalinization plant its forever home.