Picture of the week: Bubble coral

This picture of bubble coral (Plerogyra sinuosa) was taken in  the Red Sea  on  1 July 2009, with Nikon D90,  Tokina 10.0-17.0 mm f/3.5-4.5, 5 inch dome,  Dual D125 stroces,

Higlighted: Orca attacks evaluated

During the summer of 2020, a group of Orca whales off the coast of Spain and Portugal  (see map) began to act very strangely indeed along the Spanish coastline. Accounts of the incidents suggested that the animals were deliberately targeting sailing boats.  Marine science investigators are still trying to work out what was driving these complex, intelligent and highly social marine mammals to behave in this way.  The juvenile males named in the official orca record as black Gladis, white Gladis, and grey Gladis, were reported ramming mostly the rudder of the sailing boats. Reactions on the encounters between orcas and boats varied from  ‘deliberate attacks’ meant as some form of vengeance (reminiscent of Moby Dick ramming Ahabs boats) to ‘these guys were only playing’’. As top predators, aggression, dominance and shows of strength are likely to be key elements of any formative “play”. And for some of the most social animals on Earth, Dr Michael Weiss from the University of Exeter and the Center for Whale Research says, “when they play together, it could be building important social bonds”. And people should perhaps not forget that the Ocean is still the territory of big predators, some of which might not like intruders invading  their migratory routes or hunting grounds.

Higlighted: South Africa and more

It's always fun to read  Shark Bytes from Chris and Monique Fallows with news from South Africa, expeditions, lockdowns... and the Great White,  their favorite species with its spectacular breaches.

News: Egypt suspends diving activities in Ras Mohammed after shark attack

The alleged attack by an Oceanic white tip shark concerned two tourists, a mother and child swimming to their boat in the Ras Mohammed area. The  Ocean white tip is rare in this area of Northern  Egypt.

Highlighted: Arctic methane deposits starting to release

The slope sediments in the Arctic contain a huge quantity of frozen methane and other gases – known as hydrates. They are like a sleeping giant woken up by the warming of the  Arctic ice. Methane has a warming effect 80 times stronger than carbon dioxide over 20 years. The United States Geological Survey has previously listed Arctic hydrate destabilization as one of four most serious scenarios for abrupt climate change



News : First belugas in an open water sanctuary

Two belugas were recently transported from an entertainment park in China to an open water sanctuary in Iceland.  When in our future world the oceans are no safe options anymore, these  ‘semi-wild’ sanctuaries preventing these animals to return to the open ocean would be a much better alternative than current commercial marine parks such as Sea World. But..after looking at the documentary I couldn't help to  feel a bit sorry for these two Belugas missing the action and the nice Chinese trainers scratching their back after a good show.


Higlighted: Cant you sleep? Try Oceanscapes

Sit back, relax, and witness the incredible life that exists at the surface of our blue planet. Fully immerse yourself in the ocean with this 10 hour loop. Ocean Surface: 10 Hours of relaxing Oceanscapes, set at scull screen.


Highlighted: E-book update

This ‘E-book’  contains an updated collection of around 80  blog articles from the last three years.  I here provide two separate content lists, a list in which the articles are ordered according to the five most often recurring themes, and a chronological list. A simple click on the title will hopefully guide you to the article of your choice. For download,  click  next to the  PDF icon below