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Published by R. Cilveti, B. Osona, J.A. Peña, L. Moreno, O. Asensio, en representación del Grupo de Técnicas de la Sociedad Española de Neumología Pediátrica (the Spanish Society of Pediatric Pulmonology)



The increase in recreational scuba diving in recent years, including children, involves risks and the possibility of accidents. While legislation, conditions and risks of scuba diving are well documented in adults, scientific evidence in scuba diving by children and adolescents is sparse and isolated. Furthermore, existing guidelines and recommendations for adults cannot be transferred directly to children.

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In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, artist David Dunleavy, puts finishing touches on a huge mural entitled "Dolphin Rodeo" at an Islamorada, Fla., marina. The 252-foot-wide by 33-foot-high artwork features two dolphin, also known as mahi-mahi, that are popular ocean gamefish caught off the Florida Keys and other regions of the world. It took the New Jersey artist a month to paint his 62nd larger-than-life SeaLife Mural. Andy Newman AP
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Valparaiso, CHILE—The Chilean government on Monday announced that it has created the largest marine reserve in the Americas by protecting an area hundreds of miles off its coast roughly the size of Italy.

The new area, called the Nazca-Desventuradas Marine Park, constitutes about eight percent of the ocean areas worldwide that have been declared off-limits to fishing and governed by no-take protections, says Russell Moffitt, a conservation analyst with the Marine Conservation Institute in Seattle, Washington.

The Pac-Man-shaped marine protected area (MPA) encompasses roughly 115,000 square miles (297,000 square kilometers) of ocean around San Ambrosio and San Felix islands. Together, they're known as the Desventuradas (or Unfortunate in Spanish) Islands, which are part of the underwater Nazca Ridge, which runs southwest from Peru to Easter Island. 

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One in four people have an opening between the left and right chambers of the heart – called a Patent foramen ovale or PFO. Normally this is not a problem, a flap covers the opening and generally remains closed because of greater pressure in the left chamber than the right. In scuba divers though, it is a worry.

After and whilst ascending from a dive, nitrogen bubbles are formed in the blood of a diver’s veins and carried back to the heart. In a diver with a PFO, the bubbles can pass to the left chamber of the heart and be carried in the arteries back around the body. If they get into the tissues then the diver might get decompression sickness (the bends), even when diving within the normal decompression limits.

One of the treatments for a PFO is to close it using a catheter based procedure. A catheter is a flexible hollow tube which can be used to move a closure-device in place in the heart. In a study available this week in the journal, JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions, doctors report that closing a PFO in this way completely eliminates arterial bubbles after a dive. This compares to a control group where after an 18 m dive 32% of them had bubbles in their arteries, and after a 50 m dive 88% exhibited arterial bubbles. No difference was found in the presence of bubbles in veins in either groups.

The dives were simulated in a hyperbaric chamber: 34 divers “dived” to 18 m for 80 min, and 13 divers to 50 m for 20 min.

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Removal of large predators through fishing has been suggested to help the populations of smaller fish.

An international team of scientists tested this assumption and found that no-take Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) benefited all major groups – higher carnivores like sharks and groupers, benthic carnivores that live near the bottom like butterflyfishes, planktivores and herbivores. Their biomass was 40-200% greater where large predators were left alone compared to open-access areas where fishing took place.

Masked ButterflyfishMasked Butterflyfish by Tim Nicholson
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Zippers How well a zipper keeps out the cold depends on its seals. some use double — or even triple — overlapping smooth-skin with a long or inter- locking internal flap. Generally, a waterproof chest or shoulder zip will be drier — though more restrictive and harder to don and doff— than a nonwaterproof vertical rear zip.

Diving Style If you always wear a hood, consider a suit with one that’s attached. If you need maximum insulation, look at the thickest suits. If mobility is important, choose a suit that uses thinner materials in the arms and legs.

Seals Today’s suits come with more seal types than color choices – smooth-skin o-rings, double smooth-skin zippered cuffs, single smooth- skin cuffs, internal gaskets, etc. Personal preference and perfect fit are the keys to finding the best type of seal for your suit.

Materials Manufacturers often have proprietary names for their suit materials; you’ll find that one neoprene might be a little stretchier, or another is a bit denser. the bigger differences are in how the materials are used, and how the suits are shaped and put together.

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You've made a significant investment in buying a new wetsuit. Do you know how to take care of it? Follow our tips to extend the life of your suit.

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When it hatches, a Mola mola is the size of a pinhead but will grow to be the heaviest bony fish in the ocean—and the weirdest.

The weirdness begins with the eggs. A female Mola mola or ocean sunfish produces more eggs than any other vertebrate on earth.

One modest-sized female had an estimate 300 million eggs inside her.

At birth, the baby fish are protected by a star-shaped transparent covering that looks like someone put an alien head inside of a Christmas ornament—albeit a very small only a tenth of an inch across.


Even as a baby, the Mola mola has its parents’ surprised look with the wide eye and open mouth.

The baby will grow fast. Very fast. One individual in the Monterey Bay Aquarium gained 822 pounds in just 15 months (almost 2 pounds a day).

By the time it is an adolescent, the fish will have not tail fin, no ribs, a fused spine, and will swim by flapping its dorsal fin on the top and its anal fin on the bottom.

It will look like a giant swimming head.

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 The mola mola is a fish with many names. In English it is known as the ocean sunfish, in some languages it is known as a moon fish, and the German name Schwimmender Kopf, my personal favorite, translates to swimming head. A swimming fish head is exactly what these gargantuan creatures look like – flattish compressed disks, with dorsal and ventral fins, and a tiny tail. Not much is known about the mola mola, but here are a few facts I could scare up in my research about the fish I most want to dive with.  

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Their acrobatics often go unnoticed, but understanding them could help improve engineering processes, like oil refining and wastewater treatment, that rely on controlling the interaction of small particles with air-water interfaces.

Sunghwan Jung, an associate professor of biomedical engineering and mechanics in Virginia Tech's College of Engineering, has released a new study focused on the jumping behavior of copepods, small teardrop-shaped plankton near the bottom of the aquatic food chain that can sometimes vault out of the water to escape predators.

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Researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute have observed a deep-sea octopus brooding its eggs for four and a half years – longer than any other known animal. Throughout this time, the mother kept the eggs clean and guarded them from predators.

Octopuses typically have a single reproductive period and then they die. Once a clutch of fertilized eggs has been produced, the mother protects and tends them until they hatch. In most shallow-water species this brooding period lasts between one and three months. Very little is known though about the maternal behaviour of deep-living species. In the cold, dark waters of the deep ocean, metabolic processes are often slower than their counterparts at shallower depths.

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A quarter of sharks, rays and chimaeras are threatened with extinction, according to a new study by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Large, shallow-water species are at most risk.

The group found that only 23 percent of these fish is listed as “least concern” on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Of the 1,041 known species, 25 are listed as critically endangered, 43 are endangered, and 113 are vulnerable to extinction. This is the worst reported status for any major vertebrate group except for amphibians.

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Locating a diver on the surface can be surprisingly difficult. I know, because I have been at both the searching and searched-for ends of this scenario. Even with surface signaling devices, locating a tiny, floating head amidst uneven chop can be difficult; without them it may be impossible. In an ideal world, divers would never be separated from their boats or buddies, but the ocean can be unpredictable, and freak currents and mistakes occur. Hopefully you will never find yourself lost a sea, but it's still a good idea to carry surface signaling devices on every dive -- just in case. Here are five devices that can make finding a diver on the surface easier.

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Rich cold-water coral reef in the Whittard Canyon area by the Isis ROV
Rich cold-water coral reef in the Whittard Canyon area by the Isis ROV

The UK’s National Oceanography Centre has produced the first true three-dimensional picture of submarine canyon habitats, using a unique combination of marine robotics and ship-based measurements. The information captured in this new set of maps ranges in scale from the 200 km canyon down to the size of an individual cold-water coral polyp, and will be used to inform the management of the only English deep water marine conservation zone.

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Crown of thorns starfish, COTSCrown of thorns starfish, COTS

Scientists in Australia have discovered that vinegar kills Crown-of-Thorns Starfish just as effectively as the current drug, which can be expensive and difficult to source.

Outbreaks of the venomous Crown-of-Thorns Starfish (Acanthaster planci) pose one of the most significant threats to the Great Barrier Reef.

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Concern is growing that human-generated noise in the ocean disrupts marine animals that rely on sound for communication and navigation. In the modern ocean, the background noise can be ten times louder than it was just 50 years ago. But new modeling based on recently published data suggests that 200 years ago — prior to the industrial whaling era — the ocean was even louder than today due to the various sounds whales make.

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For the first time in over a century, you can actually see the original surface of the world’s first successful combat submarine. Until recently, the Hunley was completely encased in concretion, an encrusted layer of sand, sediment and shells that built up slowly over time while she was lost at sea.
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By MarEx 2015-09-04 18:43:58

After a two year investigation by the U.K. Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA), a commercial diver has been jailed for two years and ordered to pay £35,000 ($53,000) after recovering historic cannons off the U.K. coast. 

Vincent Woolsgrove of Ramsgate, Kent, pleaded guilty to fraud at Southampton Crown Court after he reported to the Receiver of Wreck that he had found and recovered five historic bronze cannons from two different shipwreck sites.

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The Department of the Navy (DoN) has issued its final rules on the disposition of sunken military craft including an updated procedure required for research and other activities on these sunken vessels.  Importantly, according to a letter DEMA has received from the DoN, “…activities such as fishing, snorkeling and diving which are not intended to disturb, remove or injure any portion of a sunken military craft are still allowed without the need for a permit.” The revised regulations permitting investigations of sunken military craft under the jurisdiction of the DoN were published in the Federal Register Monday, August 31, 2015. The new regulations won’t officially go into effect until March 1, 2016.

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I have heard the analogy about holes in the cheese several times and it pretty much sums up the incident pit.

I’ve been diving rebreathers for quite a while now, teaching them for nearly a decade and I have always been interested in rebreather diver incidents. There are many internet forums with sections dedicated to incidents where the person survived and that person can give a full account of what happened and why. Then there are the other sections of the forums where you read about diver deaths and almost certainly never get any details and a lot is left to supposition.

The reluctance to give known facts on diver fatalities stems from the respect to the families and the diver. The families do not want to read about how their loved one died and also if the diver made mistakes, friends do not want them to appear incompetent. From what I have read, there is almost never a catastrophic incident that takes the diver, it is always a series of events.

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U/W Bike Race

eventsiconJoin us on July 4th for this annual event benefitting the Children's Mile of Hope.

Lionfish Tournament

eventsiconWe need your help to make Carteret County's 5th Annual "If you Can't Beat 'em, Eat 'em" Spearfishing Tournament a success! This Tournament is a joint effort between Discovery Diving and Eastern Carolina Artificial Reef Association (ECARA).

Treasure Hunt

eventsiconFood, prizes, diving, and fun! Proceeds benefit the Mile Hope Children's Cancer Fund and DAN's research in diving safety.


2013Join us June 3rd, 2017 in support of the East Carolina Artificial Reef Association.  Click here for more info on this great event and how you can help to bring more Wrecks to the Graveyard of the Atlantic.