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About jimabernethy

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    West Palm Beach, Florida

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  1. Whale Shark Feeding while Lisa Campana watches Whale Shark with Lisa Campana Whale Shark in vertical feeding position Whale Shark silhouette Whale Shark with Lisa Campana Whale Shark with Conner Nolan
  2. I forgot to mention that Eli from Shark Diver Magazine has already requested that the story be published in his magazine in one of the future issues for those of you that want to see it for yourself. Those of you on Eric's trip with us, please bring extra cameras so we can try to see if "Spot" is interested in improving his photography skills. HA HA!
  3. Hello everyone, I just thought I would clear things up about the tiger shark taking a photo. It is true! One of our regular tiger sharks at tiger beach by the name of "Spot" (Because of a white spot on his dorsal fin) approached professional photographer Manu San Felix from Spain like he has on many times before during the previous two weeks, usually just bumping people in as a friendly kind of way. But this time he opened his mouth wide and took the housed Nikon D-100 with two strobes in his mouth and proceded to swim around with it for about one minute. During this time he moved it around in his mouth and took a perfectly exposed and level image of our tiger shark spot called tiger beach, which is ten feet deep. I was watching this all with my crew from the boat, as the strobes fired. :shock: The water was crystal clear. In the image taken by "Spot" you can see the surface as well as the bottom with some turtle grass, perfectly exposed. There were 7 other tiger sharks in the close vicinity as well as a handful of lemons and bull sharks. The ten divers from Spain that were in the water watching, immediately stampeded for the boat and got out of the water, never to return at that site. I went in to retrieve the victim (Camera) which was not flooded, but the dome is now a total loss due to all the teeth marks. There were also deep scratches in the aluminum housing. Needless to say only the crew did the night dive there that evening. Manu did get back in the water the following morning to enjoy some more time with the tigers. Although many believe sharks to be dumb eating machines, it is nice to reflect espiacially on this forum how "Spot" did choose to go digital for his first camera. :shock:
  4. Hi Bob, Beautiful image. Water color is gorgeous. Where was this taken? Is that red algae on the rear of the shell? Jim
  5. Hi Craig, I just want to thank you for your tips with Adobe premiere on the web page. They are very helpful. Did you teach yourself Premiere? I am currently editing two short films for the San Diego Undersea Film Festival, which I will be attending this September. You very knowledgeable so if it is alright I might be seeking your advice. I will look forward to the day when I can spend time with you diving some time in the future. I use Sony's trv 900 with a Aqua Video housing and their largest (forgot their name) lighting system (twin 340 watt bulbs). Thanks very much and I will look forward to your future tips. I will try to recruit a few of my friends that shoot video as well to this forum. Best Regards, Jim
  6. Slippery, My whole purpose of expressing the other side of this controversy was to show that things are not always as they are perceived just because some government makes a law about it, as is the shark feeding law in Florida and many other laws as well. I was not attacking your husband, only asking him to show me the evidence, he so easily spoke of that I believe makes people think that such scientific evidence exists. If it does, produce it, if it does not, very simply apologize for misleading this forum with garbage that does not exist. It is the correct thing to do, especially seeing that he is a moderator. He should not be saying misleading information, just to start a debate in my opinion. Why would I purposely attack someone I haven’t even met? This is ridiculous! I was only trying to educate people on what I feel is the truth about sharks, as I have been for many years. Constantly I run into people that try to portray this animal with the Jaws mentality. Jaws aired in 1971. I believe and it’s depiction of sharks was way off, and many others do as well, including the author. In fact more people are killed by almost every other animal on the planet, including ant’s, bats, tigers, bears, alligators, elephants, pigs, dogs, cats, rats, etc, etc. Falling coconut in the Caribbean alone account for roughly 400 deaths a year. Should we cut them all down? Do to the fact, that being consumed by a shark is man’s worst fear; some people still portray this animal in the wrong light, including the media. Most of the world believes it, which is even worse. I am not saying that they don’t bite people and sometimes it kills them. What I am saying is that it is an accident, and it very rarely ever happens. I believe the average number of people killed by sharks over the past 15 years is roughly 8 people a year. 9 people died last year in the state of Florida trying to get money out of a vending machine. Shark attacks are not a problem, only a perceived problem and the media feeds on your fears. I love sharks and that is why I am doing my best to represent them truthfully. If there is truth in your husband’s statement of having a scientific report, please share it with the forum. If their isn’t any scientific report that he spoke of, tell us, so we will look at sharks properly using the truth as our guide. Did you know that more people are attacked and bitten in the state of New York, every single year by people, than in the whole world by sharks? On average, 1600 people are bitten by people in the state of New York alone every year. Sharks bite roughly 75 people a year. Should we stop feeding the people of New York, because of their aggressive behavior? I think not. It has nothing to do with feeding people. In my opinion, when a shark attacks a person, what really happens is the shark made a mistake, usually it is because of murky water (can’t see what it is biting) and/or the presence of some stimulus that puts sharks into a predator mode, such as the stimulus (both vibration and electrical) put out by a wounded or hooked fish. Neither of these stimulus can any human detect. I have done a great deal of research with shark scientist and experiments with these sharks in the wild. According to the Global Shark Attack File, (public record) 90% of all shark attacks are related to some type of fishing (spear or fishing pole) This would explain why organized shark diving has such an impeccable safety record, as most of them only use dead bait which only emits a sense of smell, not enough to put sharks into the predator mode. If you looked more closely at these organized shark dives as I have, you would find that the majority of the accidents involved someone feeding the shark by hand, same as you would a dog or parrot. Lot’s of accidents happen that way to people with pets, but very very few happen with sharks, because this animal is very smart and the water is usually very clear where these shark dive exist. In closing, I would like you, to tell your husband to relax about all this as we are only debating a controversy, nothing more. Why don’t we work together toward helping sharks for our future generations? They really need it! If you don’t like organized shark diving with bait, simply don’t attend them. No big deal! But please don’t misrepresent this beautiful animal any more. Best Regards, Jim Abernethy
  7. Hello, While we all wait for cybergoldfish and mokarran to substantiate their claims that shark diving is bad, by at providing us with information so we can check out their claims, I thought you might be interested in checking out what a shark attack victim noticed while she was being attacked by a shark. This can be viewed at http://acw.activate.net/vnetworker/education2-dsl.asx I think you might see some of the real problems with shark attacks and aggresive behavior, right where the attacks happen as this victim did! Enjoy, Jim Abernethy
  8. Good morning, Finally located the video I was looking for last night. For those of you interested in seeing the type of people associated with the commercial spearfisherman against shark feeds - aka marine safety group - aka CDNN, watch this streaming video - http://acw.activate.net/vnetworker/sharkfeed.asx Warning the end of the video contains a shark being killed for no reason, except stupidity. According to the Floida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commision this does not alter their behavior and is perfectly legal. Still waiting for a reply from cybergoldfish and mokarran to provide facts for us to evaluate. Thanks, Jim
  9. Thanks so much for your compliments! It just goes to show you that even a blind squirrel gets an acorn every now and then! Jim
  10. Hi Mark and others, It is my belief that the web site cdnn.info has been put up by three commercial spearfisherman that have started a group they refer to as the "marine safety group." This name is much better for their image than the "commercial spearfisherman." (By the way this group was arrested last year for illegal fish (undersize, babies). It is public information, if you want me to produce it.) They started all the fish feeding controversy and have so far been successful in banning fish feeding in the state of Florida on the basis that it changes the sharks' behavior. No one ever said that it changes it for better or worse, only that it changes their behavior. It is clear to see from looking at the web page that the site is clearly against the Professional Association of Dive Instructors (PADI), Divers Equipment Manufacturers Association (DEMA), Divers Alert Network, Peter Hughes, Aggressor Fleet, Scuba Radio, etc, etc and of course myself and the other two Florida shark operators. The list of people they slander is longer than I can remember. On this web page are pictures taken by professional photographers without their permission, which is against the law. Unfortunately, no one so far has been able to link anyone to the site, which shows you exactly how credible it is. Who is behind the site? No one really knows. If any of you can find someone behind this site, please contact me privately. The name of the "marine safety group's" boat is "SEA KILL." Need I say any more? I have video -- which some of you have seen -- of their team shooting sharks with a hand gun, which is perfectly legal in this state, as the state does not recognize this act as changing the sharks behavior. Yes, it is true. As to your question, "does my activity with sharks change their behavior?" Without question it changes their behavior. A boat driving overhead changes their behavior. A snorkeler swimming, changes their behavior. In fact everything we do in the water effects the behavior of almost every fish in the ocean. The question should be, "does it effect their behavior in an aggressive way that endangers my divers?" Absolutely NOT! In fact statistics show that organized shark diving is safer than bowling. But I have already been through this. Check the undisputed facts published by a credible web page (With people that actually can be contacted) at www.welovesharks.com Or better yet check the statistics on shark attacks worldwide at www.sharkattackfile.com There has not been a single accident at any shark dive in Florida that I know of. While we are on this subject of defending shark dives once again, I must say, I am still waiting for all the scientific evidence from Bob (It has only been since March 2 that I have been waiting for it) and also the name of the "good friend" victim, shark diving organization etc - from mokarran (It has only been since March 5 that I have been waiting for his "Good Friends" name), so I can check up on the truth in your statements. While you are at it, how about giving us the list of scientist that are on the payroll from the dive operators, as you said! Both of you guys were very quick to put me on the front burner, but when it came time to defending your own words, you closed up tighter than a clam shell. That makes me wonder if what you are saying is actually true. I have come forth with answers to all of your questions, because it is easy for me -- what I have said is true. The ball is in your court now! We are all waiting for you to substantiate your claims by providing evidence to what you have claimed. The truth is, sharks have been eating the same thing for 400+ million years and it is not people. If your claims were true, wouldn’t it make sense that they would eat my divers first? My feeling are the same as Jean Michel-Cousteau, who said: "Sharks, worldwide, are being threatened... we as humans do not appreciate their value... I have observed that people who have a personal experience with sharks come away from the interaction with a different attitude toward them. I have also observed that when they go home they share experiences with friends. It is my belief that many divers who have had controlled encounters with sharks become ambassadors and educators who speak out on behalf on sharks.... when I weigh the possible disruption of shark's normal lives by feeding them, against the benefits of creating a constituency who respect and speak out for them; I choose feeding sharks under certain conditions." I am not asking you to agree with me. If you don’t like shark diving, please don’t go! However, if you are interested in having a debate, please substantiate your claim with facts. I will leave you all with something to think about. In the state of Florida under the present ruling: It is perfectly legal to feed a shark, at the public beach on a fishing pier. It is perfectly legal to feed a shark, if you want to catch and release it or take it home to eat. It is perfectly legal to feed a shark, if you want to catch it to take a trophy picture and then push it in the water dead. It is perfectly legal to feed a shark, if you want to shoot it with a gun. But it is not legal to feed a shark if you want to view it with a mask or use it as an educational tool to help protect the species. - Jim Abernethy
  11. Good Morning, I thought you might be interested in seeing some of Anna's and my images from the past shark expedition. Here is the link: http://scuba-adventures.com/jim/sharkexped...mages/index.htm Hope you like them. Thanks, Jim Abernethy
  12. Hello Everyone, Here is my first attempt at putting images on the web, with Eric's help of course! Hope you like it! http://scuba-adventures.com/jim/sharkexped...mages/index.htm Enjoy, Jim JASA Shark Expedition
  13. The Imax Coral Reef Adventure film by Howard and Michelle Hall is beautiful. Not only are the scenes breathtaking but the whole underlying meaning is superb and should not be missed! As usual Howard and Michelle are without question, the best underwater film producers on the planet. (My opinion) If you have the time, spend it wisely by seeing this. www.coralfilm.com Jim Abernethy
  14. Mokarran, Thanks very much for your opinion. Do you have any evidence at all, that these scientist from around the world are all on the take or is this just something you think? Who is paying them? I can't believe that scientist spend all that time and money on there education so they can do years of research to find answers to unanswered questions,only to be told what they need to say at the end of this, as if they were nothing more than a puppet with a degree. Are you implying that the fisherman are on the payroll of the dive operators as well? If not,who is paying the fisherman? The term "Global" refers to exactly that - the whole world. The board of the Global Interactive Marine Experiences Council was assembled to help fight issues for divers worldwide and was represented by individuals from many different countries, not just the US. I don't actually know how many countries had representatives at the meeting, but if you are interested I will look into it for you. It was assembled to fight for divers rights. Shark feeding was just the cause that brought them together. If what you are saying is actually true about someone getting killed at an organized shark dive, please tell me the name of the victim (your friend), the name of the dive operation that ran the organized shark dive and the year it happened, so I can look into it. This is the first I have heard of anything like this and I will be happy to share my results (good or bad) with everyone, after you give me this information and I look into it. I agree with you that people have died feeding sharks, in fact the global shark attack files is on record saying that "90% of all shark attacks are directly or indirectly attributed to fishing which is one form of feeding." According to this organization (GSAF), directly means they were holding the fishing pole or spear gun themselves when they were bit and indirectly means their friend got bit, while they were hold the fishing equipment. In fact, all of the fatality's in the US were indirectly attributed to fishing. Presently according to both the Global Shark Attack File and the International Shark Attack File, their has NEVER been a fatality at any organized shark dive worldwide. Let me shed a little light on the topic of what I meant by saying that I do not feed sharks because that is incorrect. I apologize for not being more precise. I have fed sharks for many years, until I realized that it is much better not to feed them if you want them to stay around. This happened roughly 3 years ago. I do not let the sharks feed during shark expeditions or shark dives in order to keep them around as long as possible, sometimes for three or four days. Occasionally they will steal some of the bait, if my crew is caught by surprise. I do release the fish to them, when we leave the area. If I am planning to leave this site to go to another site, usually because the big sharks are not their, I usually feed them at that point as well! I have fed sharks by hand on many occasions for fun, although usually we don't feed them, in order to keep them around longer. I also feed sharks and many other fish as well while I fish, as I am not very good at fishing. Let me restate that - I am an excellent fisherman - it is catching that I seem to be very poor at. As to the subject of loving the money more than the animals I feed. You obviously don't no me very well, as I love all animals. I didn't get into the scuba business to make money, no one does with any brains! I got into this business because I love animal encounters of all types, especially in the ocean. Anyone who has spent anytime with me will tell you what I live for. As far as loving money more than animals is concerned, you should know that I support many conservation efforts: I support Sea Shepard Conservation Society financially every year and have since I learned about this organization many years ago. In my opinion they are the most aggressive conservation society on the planet and our animals need this. If you haven't heard about them previously, please check them out. They make a big difference with many types of animals, including sharks. ( www.seashepherd.org ) I also support with both time, work and money (as a volunteer) the Marine Life Center of Juno Beach ( www.marinelife.org ) and the Busch Wildlife Sanctuary ( http://www.jupiterparents.com/buschws/buschws1.shtml )in Jupiter, Florida. I have been a volunteer at the Marine Life Center for roughly 20 years. I have a turtle permit for the state of Florida, to allow me to help in the care for these animals for roughly fifteen years. This past year I donated money, time and work to the National Marine Fisheries Service under their Goliath Grouper division ( http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/prot_res/species/...th_grouper.html ) in order to help with the continued protection of the Goliath Grouper. I have already volunteered my services to them again for this year. I also support financially the Save the Manatee Club ( www.savethemanatee.org ) to help out with these poor animals. I have worked as a volunteer, donating money and my time collecting water and algae samples for the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution ( www.hboi.edu ) for the past two years. I did this two see if our scientists can help figure out why a new strand of algae are choking the reefs in the Bahamas at an alarming rate. I feel very fortunate to be able to help animals that need our help so desperately! Sorry to get so defensive, but you were way off base with this one! I will not hold it against you, because I know you don't know me. Please don't consider this any type of attack either, just debate and defense! Best Regards, Jim Abernethy
  15. Good Morning, I thought you might be interested in hearing a few quotes by some reputable people (conservationist and shark scientist) on the subject of shark feeding. Jean Michel-Cousteau Oceanographer, Environmentalist Ocean Futures Society, President www.oceanfutures.com "Sharks, worldwide, are being threatened…we as humans do not appreciate their value… I have observed that people who have a personal experience with sharks come away from the interaction with a different attitude toward them. I have also observed that when they go home they share experiences with friends. It is my belief that many divers who have had controlled encounters with sharks become ambassadors and educators who speak out on behalf on sharks…. when I weigh the possible disruption of shark's normal lives by feeding them, against the benefits of creating a constituency who respect and speak out for them; I choose feeding sharks under certain conditions." Dr. Samuel H. Gruber Division of Marine Biology and Fisheries Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences University of Miami, Bimini Biological Field Station "Today, sites all over the world conduct controlled shark dives safely offered by professionals to thousands of tourists without injury. More people have been killed by coke machines falling on them than by sharks. No tourist has been killed or even seriously injured while participating in a well-established shark dive. Elephants kill ten times more people than sharks, crocodiles a hundred times more, and dogs injure hundreds of thousands each year. The image of sharks as killing machines is OBSOLETE!!" Doug Perrine Marine Biologist, Shark Researcher, author, marine photographer & professional spear fisherman "There is no scientific evidence to suggest any danger to divers, surfers, or swimmers in feeding areas. The very few public complaints that have surfaced from around the world have been remarkably rare. In fact, feeding dives have been conducted for more than 20 years at hundreds of sites around the world without a single report of any fatalities to divers, surfers, or swimmers. Furthermore, shark feeding does not attract sharks from very far away. Any sharks that are attracted to a feeding operation close to shore are already close to shore." Dr. Eric Ritter Ph.D., Hofstra University, Senior Scientist, Green Marine, Scientific Board of Shark Foundation, Investigator for Global Shark Attack File "There are over 300 organized shark, stingray, and fish feeding operations in 40 countries around the globe. The vast majority of these managed shark and fish feedings operate with extremely low risk to humans and little or no risk to the animals. There has been no scientific evidence presented that proves otherwise. Comments to the contrary are only opinion and blind speculation. Conditioning of sharks with regards to organized feeding has never been shown or proven by the scientific community. Responsible feeding programs have been in existence around the world for over 30 years with an impeccable safety record." This morning I am off to Shark Canyon, Florida's best shark dive. Like many areas that are not allowed to feed, the sharks are still their. I am sure we will get good images of them, but not nearly as many or as great as they could be if we were to bring bait. Directly inshore from the sight is a 24/7 shark feed (fishing pier) in the middle of a public beach. However their is a sign that says "No Shark Feeding". A fisherman on camera pointed out to me " I usually catch 3 sharks a day! The sign was put up to calm the fears of bathers at the beach. Everyone know sharks can't read sign, at least not where it sits up on the road!" Going diving with my camera, Jim Abernethy
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