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Sharks hunt down prey with super senses

Sharks hunt down prey with super senses

It turns out that blindfolding a shark or plugging its nose isn't enough to deter it from going after prey. When a shark gets hungry, it will use all the senses it has available to hunt down something to eat, a new study reveals.

The goal of the study was to figure out how sharks use their different senses together, rather than isolating one sense at a time. Researchers examined three species of sharks — blacktip, bonnethead and nurse sharks — in an artificial flow channel inside the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Fla.

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Close encounter with a great white shark

Close encounter with a great white shark

I am often told how adventurous, crazy or “brave” I am, and that I take big risks. I don’t take crazy risks, but I do take calculated ones, and participate in activities that may seem overly risky, but I make sure all precautions are taken. More people are killed in car accidents than in “adventure sports” accidents. I love nature, I love diving, but I am not reckless, far from it. My husband, Randy, and I took our young adult children, Wes and Ally, on our family dream trip to Guadalupe Island to cage dive with Great White Sharks, and we could not wait to get on the boat and into the water.

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The travelling life of the tiger shark

The travelling life of the tiger shark

At 9 foot long, not including the tail, tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) Harry Lindo is not exactly on the small side.  It’s not Harry’s size that is exciting scientists and shark enthusiasts, nor a photograph taken in 2009 by Ian Card showing a shark – suspected to be Harry, trying to eat a 150 lb juvenile tiger shark off the coast of Bermuda.  Between 2009 and 2012 researchers tagged 24 tiger sharks with satellite transmitters in the Challenger Bank, which lies just off Bermuda in the Atlantic Ocean.  In study lead by James Lea (The Guy Harvey Research Institute, Nova Southeastern University Oceanographic Center) and team of international collaborators, those shark movements have been compiled and analysed.  Harry, it turns out, is one heck of an ocean wanderer.  In just over 3 years Harry swam over 44,000 kilometres – that’s more than the circumference of the Earth (just over 40,000 kilometres).  Harry’s track is the longest recorded for a tiger shark, and probably the longest ever published for any shark species.

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Sherwood 9000 Series 2nd Stage Regulators – Upgrade Kit

Sherwood TA 150722 ‐ 9000 Series 2nd Stage Upgrade KitTECHNICAL ADVISORYDATE: July 27, 2015SUBJECT: 9000 Series 2nd Stage Regulators – Upgrade KitChanges have been made to the 9000 Series 2nd Stage internal valve components to improve the performance of the Poppet, Seat, and Orifice. These changes address the possibility of an improper seal that may develop in the 2nd stage due to either an orifice damaging the seat, or tolerance deviations that may allow for slight misalignments of the poppet to the orifice. The changes to the components are as follows:1.       Orifice: The sealing edge is slightly more rounded so it is less likely to damage the seat;2.       Seat: Now made of a slightly higher durometer to increase toughness and has an improved fit into the Poppet;3.       Poppet: The ribs have been extended all the way to the seat to improve the alignment to the orifice;These new parts are contained in an Upgrade Kit that will be provided by Sherwood Scuba at no cost, but only for the Sherwood Octo (SR9902), Brut, Magnum, Oasis, and Blizzard 2nd Stage Regulators that were produced from June 2013 through December 2014.Eligible units must be within this serial number range: 13020401 – 14124477The serial number is found stamped into the 2nd Stage housing. Please do not confuse this number with the serial number marked on the 1st Stage Regulator. Sherwood TA 150722 ‐ 9000 Series 2nd Stage Upgrade KitIf you have a 2nd Stage unit within the above serial number range that is displaying a small leak you cannot solve through a normal service and is within its normal service period, contact your Sherwood Scuba Distributor for an Upgrade Kit and perform a standard service overhaul.The Upgrade Kit contains a new two‐color Mouthpiece with Tie Strap so that the 2nd Stage can be visually identified as upgraded. The Kit also contains a new Thrust Washer so that any upgraded 2nd Stage will be fully up to date.Only one Upgrade Kit will be supplied for each 2nd Stage regulator. All Parts will retain the same part numbers except for the new two‐color Mouthpiece. All 9000 Series 2nd Stage Regulators built after January 2015 already contain the new upgraded parts and therefore are not included in the eligible serial number ranges.These regulators will have the new two‐color Mouthpiece installed to easily identify them.If you have any questions regarding the Upgrade Kit, please contact your Regional Sherwood Scuba Distributor for assistance.

 

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Thunder gone under: The story of the world’s longest maritime chase

 
Simon Ager/Sea Shepherd Australia

Simon Ager/Sea Shepherd Australia

The captain of the MV Thunder didn’t go down with his ship. Instead, he stood cheering and applauding in a life raft as the 62-m fishing trawler sank beneath the glassy surface of the Atlantic, 200 km off the coast of Gabon. Then he and his crew of 40 meekly allowed themselves to be rescued by the boat that had been pursuing them for 110 days.

It was a bizarre finish to the world’s longest maritime pursuit, one that began in the icy waters off Antarctica last Dec. 17, and ended on April 6, practically on the equator, near the tiny islands of São Tomé and Príncipe, some 19,000 km away. Reports suggest that the captain of the Thunder—a notorious pirate fishing vessel that had changed its name and flag at least three times in recent years—deliberately scuttled his vessel, although he claims he was hit by a passing cargo ship. It makes little difference. The activists from the Sea Shepherd Society had made their point: that they were willing to go to the very ends of the Earth to protect the Patagonian toothfish.

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Canada's scuba hot spots: Have you dived here yet?

Since I’ve scuba dived as many times as I’ve bungee jumped in a leotard (not very many, if you’re wondering), I took a deep breath and tapped three regional experts for tips on where to go in Canada – starting with Russell Clark from the Dive Industry Association of British Columbia.

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The seven hottest tech trends circa 1776.

The seven hottest tech trends circa 1776.

A little more than 238 years ago, our forefathers used the best technology available to inspire colonial proto-Americans to revolt against the King of England. At that time, the “best” technology available was the printing press and the “best” social network required the use of “word of mouth” in Public Houses. Grog (small beer) was the lubricant that facilitated this communication and the rest, as they say, is history.

But while all this was going on, there were a bunch of entrepreneurs and a few startups that changed the world. In the 1770s, America was a relatively low tech, agrarian society, but as you can see from the list below, all that was about to change. So here, for your Independence Day reading pleasure, are the seven hottest tech trends circa 1776.

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There’s a vegetable garden off the coast of Italy, and it’s growing under the sea

A few years ago, Italian farmer Luca Gamberini began pondering what it would take to grow perfect garden vegetables. He already knew that plants need constant temperatures, as well as water, light, and protection from harmful external elements. But since it can be difficult to recreate these conditions outdoors all year long, or even at all, Gamberini needed an alternative that could provide a more stable growing environment.

His solution? Underwater greenhouses.

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Underwater Internet coming Soon?

You don’t usually find a wireless network whilst underwater, but that may change as researchers at the University at Buffalo are developing a deep-sea internet. They hope that this technological breakthrough will lead to improvements in tsunami detection, pollution monitoring and other activities.

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Beth Tierney on Diving the World

What makes your book different from other books about diving around the world?

There are two principals we have stuck to ever since the first edition. Right from the start, we asked other divers where they had been and where they were diving next. And then we focused on those places people actually want to go to and can afford to go to. Let’s face it, we would all love to dive the Antarctic, but few of us will win the lottery this week! The other thing is that we can say – hand on heart – that there is nothing in the book that we haven’t personally done. If we haven’t dived the country or a specific site, we don’t write about it or pass opinion. It makes the guide unique. Yes, it is personal to us and our experiences but at least readers know we have said it because we have done it!

Blue ringed octopus

Blue ringed octopus

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Why Marine Protected Areas Matter to Divers

Why Marine Protected Areas Matter to Divers

Popular diving locations tend to be centered around marine biodiversity hotspots. The unique landscapes of coral reefs and mass congregations of marine leviathans draw divers like prey to a frogfish lure. These same spots usually have a history of local livelihoods like fishing, and few locations exist where there is no conflict between these two industries.

Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are parts of the ocean where certain activities are restricted benefit both divers and fishers, creating a permanent pool of marine resources that then seed and replenish heavily used areas.

The term "Marine Protected Area" is an umbrella term, and may refer to a variety of regualations and restrictions. Unfortuantely, a misunderstanding of the rules and regulations that surround MPAs can lead to a volatile relationship between the diving industry and other local livelihoods using reefs and other ecosystems. Here we cover some useful tips that you can use to promote these fantastic resources for more collaborative efforts for protecting valuable marine life.

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Miniature Origami Swimming Robot

Miniature Origami Swimming Robot

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers have demonstrated an untethered miniature origami robot that self-folds, walks, swims and dissolves. From a flat 2D sheet with a magnet on it, the robot folds itself up in a matter of seconds, zips around via magnets on land or water and then gets dunked into a tank of acetone to dissolve completely.

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Shipwreck Videos provided by Odyssey Marine Exploration

SS Gairsoppa: The Gairsoppa lies approximately 3 miles below the surface of the North Atlantic Ocean. The ship sank after being hit with a torpedo on February 17, 1941. Odyssey discovered the shipwreck in 2011 and inspected the site with a remotely operated vehicle (ROV). What appear to be tea chests were observed in one cargo hold that was accessible to the ROV. The Gairsoppa’s cargo manifest included more than 1700 tons of tea and research indicates the ship was also carrying up to 7 million ounces of silver.

SS Mantola: The SS Mantola lies approximately 1.5 miles below the surface of the North Atlantic Ocean. The ship was less than a year old when it was hit by a torpedo on February 9, 1917 and sank. Odyssey discovered the shipwreck in 2011, approximately 100 miles from the SS Gairsoppa shipwreck. This video was taken during the inspection of the site with a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV).

HMS Victory: Balchin's HMS Victory was the predecessor to Nelson's Victory. It was commanded by Admiral Sir John Balchin and was considered the greatest ship in the world when it was lost. In a storm in 1744. Armed with up to 110 guns, Victory was the last Royal Navy warship to be lost at sea with a complete complement of bronze cannon. The shipwreck was discovered in 2008 by Odyssey Marine Exploration.

SS Republic: Scenes from the SS Republic shipwreck site, a Civil War era paddlewheel steamer which sank approximately 100 miles off the Georgia coast. Odyssey recovered more than 51,000 coins and nearly 14,000 artifacts from this site 1,700 feet deep.

HMS Sussex: Underwater video from a shipwreck site believed to be HMS Sussex, a British warship which sank in 1694. The video was taken during pre-disturbance and core sampling surveys at the site.

"Tortugas": This Spanish colonial shipwreck discovered approximately 1500 feet deep was the first ever deep-ocean remotely-operated archaeolgical excavation. During the 1990-1991 excavation nearly 17,000 artifacts, some as small as seeds and pearls, were recovered

"Blue China": Likely the remains of a modest American coastal trader conducting business along the Atlantic Seabaord in the years preceding the American Civil War.

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Creature of the Month: Hermit Crab, Dardanus species

Hermit crabs scuttle about the sea-floor using someone else’s
shell for a home. They always use empty shells and never
kill the original occupant.

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Océano Profundo 2015: At The Bottom of the Caribbean

With measured precision remotely operated vehicles D2 and Seirios are lowered into the deep blue waters of the Caribbean. Ready for the unknown, they begin the descent through the water column to the seafloor hundreds of meters below.

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Cuttlefish – Master of Camouflage

What makes the Cuttlefish so good at controlling its colour and blending in with its surroundings? This month scientists at Harvard University and the Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory have helped answer that question.

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State of Europe’s seas getting worse

Europe is woefully behind in its ambition of achieving a ‘good environmental status’ of our seas by 2020, according to a report published today by the European Environment Agency.

Only 4% of the marine species and habitats assessed have achieved the 2020 target of ‘good’ status.

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Lessons for Life: Lack of Training, Prep Spells Doom

Dave’s friends would never believe he went to more than 200 feet — he had even borrowed a computer so he could prove it. He was thinking about that and smiling right up until he took a breath from his regulator and there was nothing there.

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Mantis shrimp inspires new body armor, football helmet design

Mantis shrimp inspires new body armor, football helmet design

The mantis shrimp is able to repeatedly pummel the shells of prey using a hammer-like appendage that can withstand rapid-fire blows by neutralizing certain frequencies of "shear waves," according to a new research paper by University of California, Riverside and Purdue University engineers.

The mantis shrimp is able to repeatedly pummel the shells of prey using a hammer-like appendage that can withstand rapid-fire blows by neutralizing certain frequencies of "shear waves," according to a new research paper by University of California, Riverside and Purdue University engineers.

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Mysterious disease creates Zombie Starfish

Sick and dying starfish (sea stars) have appeared in a multitude of locations between Alaska and southern California.

“It’s like a zombie wasteland,” says biologist Emily Tucker told Nature. “You’ll see detached arms crawling away from their body.”

Called Sea Star Wasting Disease, it can cause the death of an infected starfish in just a few days. Its effects can be devastating on starfish populations.

The disease has hit before, in southern California in 1983-1984 for example and again in 1997-98. These events were associated with warmer sea temperatures. The current outbreak is more widespread.

It is particularly worrying because one of the starfish affected, Pisaster ochraceus, was the original “keystone species”. This is a species that has a disproportionately large effect on its environment relative to its abundance. Without it the ecosystem would be dramatically different. The concept was first proposed in 1969 using Pisaster ochraceus as a primary example. Within a year of Pisaster ochraceus being removed, biodiversity halved.

Lesions on the animal are the first signs of the disease. Tissue then decays around the lesions which leads to break up of the body and death.

There is a map of where diseased sea-stars have been found at http://data.piscoweb.org/marine1/seastardisease.html

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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 6th 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.

ECARA Event

2013Join us 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.