Nexus launches birthday cake
We are not sure of the details yet, but it would seem that housing manufacturer Nexus has gone into the catering business. K. Saroj Chutharatkul’s birthday cake seems more suited to underwater than surface use. Specifications, weights and buoyancy characteristics are to be confirmed! (Picture by K. Pipat Kosumlaksamee.)
New DiveFilm HD podcast: Antartica Weddell seals
Mary Lynn Price, Wetpixel moderator and DiveFilm HD host has added a podcast of her ongoing research in Antarctica. Entitled Antarctica Weddell seals, it is available for download on iTunes. Mary Lynn is part of a research team from Montana State University that returns to the Erebus Bay area of the Ross Sea in Antarctica annually during the Weddell seal pupping season to study these seals. Initiated in 1968, this is one of the longest running studies of a long-lived mammal anywhere, and focuses on the southernmost mammal residing on our planet. The podcast was edited in a hut on the sea ice.
DiveFilm HD is produced in association with Wetpixel and the podcast at iTunes is currently among the iTunes Podcast “Staff Favorites,” and continues to be the #1 Sports & Recreation Video Podcast there.
Aquatica releases new housing for Nikon D3 series
As their existing housing for the Nikon D3 series did not give full functionality for the D3S, Aquatica has gone back to the drawing board, and produced a whole new model. This redesign features the relocation and addition of some controls, particularly those for the cameras video features, and larger more tactile control knobs have been added for better feel in cold water. In addition, a new manufacturing process has allowed the weight to be reduced by 20%. The new housing will fit the D3X and D3 cameras as well as the D3s, and the new housing back can be retrofitted to existing D3 housings.
Easydive releases iTTL and eTTL strobe
Easydive has released the Easy Flash strobe, which is compatible with both Nikon iTTL and Canon eTTL protocols. The strobe has an aluminum body with double o-rings and is powered by Sanyo rechargeable NiMh batteries. The batteries should give at least 200 shots at full power and it is available with either Nikonos or Canon S6 connectors.
Diver numbers may affect manta aggregation in Maldives
Dive magazine has reported that the crowd scenes that occurred during this years manta aggregation at Hanifaru in the Baa Atoll, Maldives may well drive the mantas away. Up to 200 divers and snorkelers were observed in the water at the same time, despite a regulation stipulating that this number must not exceed 80. The possibility of aggregations of up to 250 mantas at a time has massively increased the sites popularity over the past three years. Guy Stevens, director of the Maldives Manta Ray Project and marine biologist at Four Seasons Resort in Landaa Giraavaru, says:
“Hanifaru is an amazing place, but it’s also a place that, if we’re not careful, will be destroyed,” and “no-one will arrive at the site and willingly forgo diving or snorkeling because it is already full. I would like to see enforcement of the regulations - this year it was a mess.”
WWF Living Planet Report 2010 released
World Wildlife Fund’s biyearly report on the state of our planet’s biodiversity, the Living Planet Report, has been released. This report covers the planet’s biodiversity health and also human ecological footprint on the biome in every region. The study reveals human activity has outpaced what the planet is capable of handling by 50%. Marine biodiversity has dropped 35% for freshwater biomes and 25% for marine species. The report also maps the consumption based on demographics of different countries and region. The report is available for download here. The webcast from Wild Screen is here.
Mike Veitch to judge at Layang Layang photoshoot
Video: Striking mantis shrimp
Wetpixel members Josh Jensen and Liz Harlin of Undersea Productions have been a part of David Attenborough’s “First Life” series for BBC / Discovery Channel. The new series used 9 clips from their stock footage library, including some amazing footage of a mantis shrimp catching a small passing fish. It was filmed in Indonesia.
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- The last surviving sea silk seamstress (via )