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Saltwater crocodile attack in Misool, Raja Ampat, Indonesia Photo

Saltwater crocodile attack in Misool, Raja Ampat, Indonesia

The facts around a saltwater crocodile attack at the “blue-water mangroves” in Misool, Raja Ampat, Indonesia have been divulged by the diver who was attacked and by witnesses who were on the M/V Ondina, the live-aboard dive vessel they were on.

we found out that croc came out of nowhere, and grabbed diver from side, damaging his hand and neck and trying to pull victim to the deep place - typical behaviour. Buddy tried to fight croc with his hands (he had no knife in his disposal) and said that he poked an eye of croc with finger, but did not succeed and surfaced to call for help. Apparently croc finally released his hold then victim was able to reach his knife and stab eye with it…

Click through to read the entire discussion. The Wetpixel Ultimate Indonesia expedition had been diving at that very site just the month before; many of our group were actively looking for a crocodile in the mangroves, but none of us saw one.

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Leandro Blanco wins SDUPS 40th Annual Film Festival Photo

Leandro Blanco wins SDUPS 40th Annual Film Festival

SDUPS has announced that Leandro Blanco has won the 40th Annual Film Festival with his film, “Voices We Shall Never Hear,” a powerful, emotional collage of underwater imagery—both concrete and abstract—interspersed with disturbing images of humans and their effect on the marine ecosystem (and each other). I was in the audience, and the short film was made even more powerful by its display on the enormous screen in the auditorium. I suspect that Leo’s film won by a landslide.

We’ve embedded the film in this entry, but you can also see it as a DiveFilm HD podcast [direct].

UPDATE: Allison Vitsky has posted photos from the evening’s event.

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New pilot video from Shark Angels on sharks and shark finning Photo

New pilot video from Shark Angels on sharks and shark finning

The Shark Angels have released a new pilot video about sharks and the threats they face today. It features Alison Kock, Kim McCoy and Julie Andersen, three women from three different conservation organizations: Save Our Seas, Sea Shepherd, and Shark Savers.

The Angels are leading a grassroots campaign - combining their respective organizations’ strengths in awareness, education, science, grassroots activism, and enforcement - to combat the myths about sharks, to expose the sad truth that many sharks are being chased towards extinction and to stop the global slaughter before it is too late. Simply put, we aim to save sharks… and we need your help.

Check it out—it features fantastic footage of sharks in the wild as well as footage of the threats that are decimating their population today…

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Steve Drogin, underwater adventurer, passes away on April 14, 2009 Photo

Steve Drogin, underwater adventurer, passes away on April 14, 2009

As many of you already know, underwater adventurer and philanthropist Steve Drogin passed away from a heart attack last week while vacationing in India with his wife, Hiro. Steve was a dear friend of many in the dive industry; we all will miss his booming, fun-loving presence. I have an old bumper sticker Steve gave me when I first met him. It simply reads, “The Ocean is my Playground.” The ocean certainly was Steve’s playground. His love of the oceans complemented his personality as a facilitator. Steve was well known for his generosity and ability to connect people with similar interests.

A memorial service has been scheduled for Wednesday, April 29, 2009 at the Robert Pain Scripps Forum in La Jolla, CA. Continue reading for full details, including a list of donation recipients in lieu of sending flowers (as requested by his family).

UPDATE: I’ve posted a few photos from the memorial service, which was beautiful.

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Wetpixel will be at the Northwest Dive and Travel Expo this weekend Photo

Wetpixel will be at the Northwest Dive and Travel Expo this weekend

Wetpixel and Wetpixel Quarterly will be attending the Northwest Dive and Travel Expo at the Tacoma Convention Center in Washington state this weekend, April 25-26, 2009. Matt Segal and I were up in Seattle last year to dive with six-gill sharks, and we found the local dive community to be some of the best hosts we’ve ever encountered. We’ve heard great things about this show, and are excited to be represented there.

Wetpixel will be in booth 925. If you’d like to go to the show and are interested in volunteering to help represent Wetpixel at our booth, we’d love to have you! Please contact Michaela Brockstedt at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) if you’re interested.

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Eric Cheng presents at Sports Basement, San Francisco, April 23, 2009

Here’s a quick reminder that Wetpixel publisher and editor Eric Cheng will be giving a talk at Sports Basement in San Francisco on Thursday, April 23, 2009 from 6:30-8:30pm as part of a series of events by Wetpixel Quarterly magazine.

16 underwater images by co-editors Eric Cheng and Eli Woolery will be on display. The event takes place downstairs in “The Grotto” and parking is easy in the Basement garage (access on Florida Street).  This will be a repeat of the talk that Eric gave at the Bay Area Dive Show film festival in San Jose last Friday night, so if you missed it, here is your second chance to hear all the stories about his time with Sea Shepherd on this year’s anti-whaling campaign in Antarctica.

In addition, Eric will present his most recent underwater photography expedition to Indonesia, and will take questions and offer insight on his underwater photography technique.

Cold beer, refreshments and snacks are free! The event takes place at the Mission / Portrero location of Sports Basement, at 1590 Bryant St, San Francisco, CA 94103, USA.  The event starts at 6:30pm, and Eric will start the presentation at 7pm. All attendees get a 10% off coupon at Sports Basement - and wetsuits are currently on sale!  We look forward to seeing you there!

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Volunteers for Bay Area Dive Show, Apr 17-18, 2009 Photo

Volunteers for Bay Area Dive Show, Apr 17-18, 2009

Wetpixel has decided to have a booth at the Bay Area Dive Show, which takes place this Friday and Saturday, Apr 17-18, 2009 in San Jose, CA. We’re looking for 2-3 volunteers to represent both Wetpixel.com and Wetpixel Quarterly at our booth during the following shifts:

Friday, April 17, 2009: 4:30pm-8:00pm
Saturday, April 18, 2009: 9am-2pm / 1pm-5pm

In addition to our eternal gratitude, we are offering volunteers a free pass to the show, a free (empty) Wetpixel Quarterly Collector’s Box and a free issue of Wetpixel Quarterly Issue #5!

Wetpixel publisher and editor Eric Cheng will be one of the presenters at the Friday evening Film Festival. If you’re interested, please contact Michaela Brockstedt at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). We’ll see you there!

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Cor Bosman and Craig Jones post Ultimate Indonesia trip reports Photo

Cor Bosman and Craig Jones post Ultimate Indonesia trip reports

Wetpixel moderators Cor Bosman and Craig Jones have posted trip reports from the recent Wetpixel Ultimate Indonesia expedition. Most of us logged over 130 dives over 40 days in Sorong, Misool, Halmahera, Seram, Ambon, Gunung Api, and Alor! We photographed Rhinopias, blue-ringed octopi, wunderpusses, mimic octopi, strange and rare shrimps and nudibranches, sea snakes, frogfishes (galore!), Bobbit worms, and more.

The second Ultimate Indo trip turned out to have the most Wetpixel moderators of any trip in history. Aboard the Seven Seas were Eric Cheng, Matt Segal, Cor Bosman, Julie Edwards, and Craig Jones. In addition, Drew Wong waylaid us on the streets of Sanur during our layover in Bali.

Check out Cor’s trip report (includes a GPS track) and Craig’s gallery. There are some wonderful images there. UPDATE: Frank has also posted a gallery.

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Jim Abernethy and crew free tangled lemon shark Photo

Jim Abernethy and crew free tangled lemon shark

Our good friend Jim Abernethy over at JASA has posted a video of him and his crew catching a lemon shark in the Bahamas and removing a rope that was wrapped tightly around its head. Jim writes:

The rope was buried roughly an inch under the lemon’s skin, which had obviously continued to grow over it. It must have been there for years. Located in front of the pectoral fins I could see that it was cutting into the gills as well… As I held her still, crew member Sean Payne cut the line with a knife. I immediately pushed her back in the water and watched her swim off knowing she now had many years ahead of her. The total time out of the water was one minute and three seconds.

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Memorial service for Sascha Dambach in Indonesia Photo

Memorial service for Sascha Dambach in Indonesia

Steve Fish has posted links to videos celebrating the life of Kararu’s Sascha Dambach, who passed away in a motorcycle accident earlier this month.

The Memorial service for Sascha on Voyager at Tulamben April 11 was very well attended. After the service Sascha’s ashes were spread in the sea he loved so much… Loads of people had responded to Berkley White’s call for images of Sascha and we were able to put a multimedia presentation up at the party. I’ve posted it on YouTube for all to share… To see it in order, first watch the “Intro to Remembering Sascha”, then the main event: “Remembering Sascha”. We were also fortunate to get a video clip that was recorded last summer when Sascha attended a meditation course in Ubud and I have also uploaded it. It’s pure Sascha and very poignant considering the circumstances.

The videos are available online at the KararuDiveVoyages YouTube channel. There is also a discussion in the forums. Sasha will be missed dearly by his friends, and by the greater dive community.

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