Record Coral Die-Off in the Caribbean Photo

Record Coral Die-Off in the Caribbean

Scientists from NOAA and the United States National Park Service have reported an unprecedented reef-building coral die-off in the Caribbean.

“It’s an unprecedented die-off,” said National Park Service fisheries biologist Jeff Miller, who last week checked 40 stations in the Virgin Islands. A February NOAA report calculates 96 percent of lettuce coral, 93 percent of the star coral and nearly 61 percent of the iconic brain coral in St. Croix had bleached. Much of the coral had started to recover from the bleaching last fall, but then the weakened colonies were struck by disease, finishing them off.

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Seacam 5D Housing First Impressions Photo

Seacam 5D Housing First Impressions

I was fortunate enough to receive one of the first Seacam 5D housings to arrive in the States and got it just in time for a one week live-aboard dive trip with Jim Abernethy’s Scuba Adventures. This was a Wetpixel trip - an intensive digital photo week of shark diving in the Bahamas , and I had the opportunity to use the Canon 5D and the Seacam housing in a wide variety of challenging conditions – including tiger shark prod…. I also got to do two macro dives at the Blue Heron Bridge in West Palm Beach – a muck diving “haven.” Having transitioned from a Seacam 1D series housing, I can offer some first impressions about this new 5D housing and compare and contrast it to the 1D series setup, which may help others who are thinking of putting together a similar system. This isn’t an in-depth review, however I believe it covers most of the areas of interest for potential users.

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Aquatica D200 Housing Photo Photo

Aquatica D200 Housing Photo

Aquatica have sent us photos of their soon-to-be-released D200 housing. This housing will be their first to feature a magnified viewfinder. According to Blake Stoughton at Aquatica, this housing will ship with a user-removable standard viewfinder, that can be replaced with their magnified viewfinder when it is released. This housing also features spring-loaded controls and a quick-release camera mounting tray. Continue reading for the photos.

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Book Review: Reef Life Photo

Book Review: Reef Life

When Eric Cheng asked me to review Reef Life: Natural History and Behaviors of Marine Fish and Invertebrates (by Denise and Larry Tackett) I gladly accepted the task for two main reasons. First, I was very glad to see that a book about natural history and behavior of marine life was out, as there are not many books available on this subject. Second, I didn’t know about the book and didn’t have a copy! The main objective of the book is to simplify marine biology in a way that divers and aquarists can understand it, but still keep it scientifically accurate. Click on the link to the full article and find out if they succeeded!

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RSMAS 2006 Underwater Photography Contest

RSMAS (Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science) is running a photo contest with dive travel and cash prizes with a deadline for submission of April 17, 2006.  Only amateur photographers can enter (defined as those who make less than 20% of their income through photography), and no photos that have been accepted for publication will be accepted.

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DEMA Show 2006 website is live Photo

DEMA Show 2006 website is live

DEMA Show 2006’s website is now live.  (You know how you have to say “DMV” and not “the DMV?”  Same deal here, it seems!)

Providing vital information about the upcoming DEMA Show 2006 taking place November 8-11, 2006 in Orlando, Florida, the DEMA Show website is an invaluable resource for all exhibitors and attendees.  The site currently features everything from Show registration guidelines and a downloadable floor plan to information on sponsorship opportunities, access to the Exhibitor Resource Center and a link to the official website for the Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau to help exhibitors and attendees plan their trip. 

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Book Review: Underwater Photographer

This morning a copy of Martin Edge’s new book The Underwater Photographer dropped through my letterbox. The book will be officially released at the London International Dive Show (1/2 April 2006), but I believe that this is such an important book for underwater photographers that I wanted to write a review straight away. The Underwater Photographer is a third edition, but it has been so thoroughly revised to include digital techniques that it could have easily justified a new title. The late, great Jim Church said of second edition that it “set a standard that will only be surpassed when Martin writes a third edition”. Read our review to see if it lives up to this billing.

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Steve Douglas on underwater video Photo

Steve Douglas on underwater video

Underwater videographer Steve Douglas (who was also my original certifying instructor!) has an excellent, comprehensive article on underwater videography posted over at Ken Stone’s Final Cut Pro website.  It’s a perfect first read for scuba divers and still photographers looking to shoot video underwater.

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