Deep sea habitats survey spots shipwreck

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Tom Tangye/JNCC

Image caption

The wreck could be that a Swedish cargo ship sunk off Orkney in 1940

Scientists carrying out a survey of deep sea habitats off the Northern Isles may have sighted the wreck of a ship sunk by a German U-boat in 1940.

The vessel is believed to be the Lagaholm, a cargo ship from Sweden, a neutral country during World War Two.

It was sunk by gunfire from a submarine off North Ronaldsay in Orkney. One crew member died in the attack.

The wreck appeared in a scan during a new survey of the West Shetland Shelf Marine Protected Area.

A previous study of the West Shetland Shelf led to the discovery of a new species of worm which has eyes in its head and also in its bottom.

The Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Marine Scotland Science and Historic Environment Scotland are examining data to confirm the identity of the wreck.

The West Shetland Shelf Marine Protected Area is similar in size to the Cairngorms National Park, which is the UK’s largest national park and covers parts of the Highlands, Aberdeenshire, Perthshire, Angus and Moray.

Image copyright
National Museums Scotland

Image caption

A new species of worm was discovered in a previous survey of the West Shetland Shelf

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