Last chance to order your Wetpixel/Divester t-shirts! Photo

Last chance to order your Wetpixel/Divester t-shirts!

This weekend, I wore my Wetpixel/Divester t-shirt at a local dive show. While walking around, I heard people muttering “Cool shirt.” Meanwhile, other people were stopping me, asking me where I got it. I was proud to talk about Wetpixel and Divester and explain the contest. We’re nearly out of these super-cool shirts, so if you want one, you’d better hurry and order one. Orders shipped inside the US/Canada are $17; orders outside the US/Canada are $27.

Note that we’ve covered all our costs for the run of the shirts, so every dollar collected will go straight to an ocean-related charity. In other words, you’ll look good AND feel good. If you order soon, we’ll get it shipped out to you well in advance of Christmas. This way, you can get a shirt either for that special diver on your list—OR for yourself!

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Raja Ampat dive trip report by Andrea and Antonella Ferrari Photo

Raja Ampat dive trip report by Andrea and Antonella Ferrari

FiNS Associate Editors Andrea and Antonella Ferrari recently returned from Raja Ampat, Indonesia with another tale of their travels.

Based at both the Sorido Eco Resort and Kri Eco Resort, Andrea and Antonella call Raja Ampat “a place so remote, so faraway, so pristine we like to refer to it as being ‘over the rainbow,’” and hope that the excessive beauty of the area and its diving will last.

Continue reading for the full trip report…

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Fak-Fak to Sorong expedition with Eric Cheng and Norbert Wu Photo

Fak-Fak to Sorong expedition with Eric Cheng and Norbert Wu

There are still last-minute spots left on this trip!  After the recent announcement of dozens of new species found just off the coast of Papua New Guinea, you’re going to want to go on this trip.  Renowned photographer and filmmaker Norbert Wu and Wetpixel’s Eric Cheng will be aboard a brand-new dive vessel called Seahorse for a dive expedition in Rajah Ampat this coming February 6-21, 2007.  The itinerary will take us from Fak-Fak (mentioned in the article as breaking the world record for most species on a single dive) to Sorong over the course of 15 days.  Graham Abbott, a Wetpixel member and owner of Diving4Images, leads the expedition. [fak-fak to sorong] [contact for info]

Update: Alex Mustard has just returned from a trip on the Seahorse (same itinerary), and David Doubilet and “the scientists” will be out there on the charter just before ours.  This area is *hot*.

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Bizarre deep-sea creatures imaged off New Zealand for the first time Photo

Bizarre deep-sea creatures imaged off New Zealand for the first time

Builder’s Pencil, which spans 180,000 square meters off New Zealand’s eastern coast, is one of the largest seep sites in the world. Recently, a joint US/New Zealand research team studying the area photographed and videotaped - for the first time! - a variety of unusual deep-sea creatures, such as the hard-to-pronounce Vestimentiferan worm. Dwelling up to 1 kilometer below the waves, these unusual animals are capable of converting energy-rich chemicals from the nearby methane vents into living matter in the absence of sunlight.

After mapping the sea floor via sonar, the researchers lowered video and still cameras into the deep, dark waters. In addition to the worms, the scientists captured footage of hermit crabs, glass sponges, tube worms, and more. If you want to see what the creatures look like, select footage from the expedition has been uploaded to YouTube. Admittedly, much of the footage features sea floor punctuated by strobe flashes. However, I think you’ll be amazed with the clarity of the footage. Moreover, I’m impressed that scientists are using popular culture to spread their message. Rock on, you deep-sea scientists!

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Reminder: Submit to Our World Underwater and DEEP 2007 Competitions Photo

Reminder: Submit to Our World Underwater and DEEP 2007 Competitions

Photographers and videographers!  Remember to get your submissions into the two underwater photo contests hosted at UnderwaterCompetition.com before January 7, 2007!  With over USD $55,000 in combined prizes, we’re going to send 21 winners on dive trips around the world and shower many more with dive and photo gear.  Winning images in the OWU competition will be announced and presented at the Our-World Underwater festival in Chicago between Feb 9-11, 2007, and winners of both competitions will have their images printed in some of the most popular dive magazines in the world (see contest site for publishing partners).

Quick links to the two competitions:
- 2nd Annual Wetpixel and DivePhotoGuide International Photo & Video Competition
- DEEP Indonesia 2007 Underwater Photography Competition

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2007 Bimini Shark Encounter ready for applications Photo

2007 Bimini Shark Encounter ready for applications

Wildeye has confirmed the date for the 2007 Bimini Shark Encounter as March 4-13, 2007, and is currently accepting applications for the trip.

The course is based at the renowned Bimini Biological Field Station (Sharklab) in the Bahamas, and enables you to work with, learn about and film/photograph a range of sharks led by well-known shark biologists Samuel “Doc” Gruber and Dean Grubbs.

You will learn about shark biology and conservation through a number of illustrated lectures and videos by scientists who are actively studying these predators, and have an opportunity to film and photograph them with wildlife photographer Sune Nightingale.

Visit Wildeye Bimini Shark Encounter for more information…

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Wetpixel Solomon Islands Expedition, Sep 11-25, 2007 Photo

Wetpixel Solomon Islands Expedition, Sep 11-25, 2007

Wetpixel.com and photographer Eric Cheng are leading an expedition to the Solomon Islands aboard the M/V Bilikiki from September 11-25, 2007! The Solomon Islands are one of my favorite dive destinations, and offer everything from tiny pygmy seahorses to huge barracuda tornados. The topography (both topside and underwater) is absolutely breath-taking, and the crew and guides on the Bilikiki are one of the best I’ve encountered.

In addition to the leadership of veteran managers Monty Sheppard and Michelle Gaut, Wetpixel members and award-winning photographers Cor Bosman and Julie Edwards will also be on this trip.  Cor and Julie have literally spent months in the Solomon Islands aboard the Bilikiki, and their knowledge of the area is impressive.  Eric Cheng will be onboard offering informal underwater photography advice.

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