Recent Articles

  • Welcome to California Diving News – Your Resource for Diving the Golden State

    Welcome to California Diving News – Your Resource for Diving the Golden State

    Walk into a dive store in Indiana and ask the person behind the counter about diving in Bonaire. Or about the Cayman Islands. They have been there, and can tell you anything that you want to know. Tell them that you are going on a business trip to California and would like to dive there — what can they tell you about it? Odds are, blank stares. California …Read More »

  • The “Big-Winged” Whales: California’s Humpbacks

    The “Big-Winged” Whales: California’s Humpbacks

    In last month’s Marine Life column we featured gray whales. This time we’ll spotlight humpbacks (Megaptera novaengliae). Blue whales will be featured in the next issue. All three of these are baleen whales — Mysticeti. Their cousins the toothed whales, which include sperm whales and orcas, are known as Odontoceti. Humpbacks are among the easiest whales to identify. This can …Read More »

  • 39th Annual Avalon Underwater Cleanup Saturday, February 20, 2020 

    39th Annual Avalon Underwater Cleanup Saturday, February 20, 2020 

    USC’s Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber and Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies–Catalina Conservation Divers are proud to host Catalina Island’s 39th Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup, which is scheduled for Saturday, February 20, 2020. The event is one of the largest annual dive events in Southern California. It began in the 1970s in an effort to cleanup Avalon Harbor, and this event is …Read More »

  • First White Abalone Release Marks Important Milestone for Species Facing Extinction 

    First White Abalone Release Marks Important Milestone for Species Facing Extinction 

    A career dedicated to mollusks isn’t always easy. Sometimes progress can occur at a snail’s pace. But a team of scientists are close to reaching a significant milestone in their efforts to bring white abalone — a species of sea snail — back from the brink of extinction. During the week of November 18, thousands of white abalone hatched in …Read More »

  • A Pinniped Playground: Diving with Sea Lions at San Carlos Beach 

    A Pinniped Playground: Diving with Sea Lions at San Carlos Beach 

    San Carlos Beach has got to be the most versatile dive site in the Monterey area. The dive site located just off the beach, also referred to as The Breakwater, is used for scuba class instructional dives, a great macro photography location, a go-to night dive destination, the location of the “barge” wreck, home to the Metridium Fields, and the …Read More »

  • February 8: Cephalopod Celebration at Birch Aquarium

    February 8: Cephalopod Celebration at Birch Aquarium

    Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography is celebrating the wonderful world of cephalopods. Squid, octopus, cuttlefish and their cousins have been around since before the dinosaurs. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. the aquarium’s scientists will be on hand to answer questions about cephalopods. Rare specimens from the Scripps Oceanographic Collections will also be on display. The event is …Read More »

  • Getting Schooled as a Scuba Diver: Finding the Lesson in Every Dive 

    Getting Schooled as a Scuba Diver: Finding the Lesson in Every Dive 

    A dear friend, a diver with seven decades of diving experience, once told me something that stuck with me. “I’ve never stopped learning,” he said. “I can always get some lesson, however small, out of every dive I do.” I surfaced from my dives with a slightly different attitude after that, always taking the time to concentrate on what I’d …Read More »

  • Enjoying the East End Pinnacles of Santa Rosa Island

    Enjoying the East End Pinnacles of Santa Rosa Island

    Wiping the sleep from my eyes, I saw that our dive boat had reached the backside of Santa Rosa, the third in the Northern Channel Islands chain, while I’d been snoozing. I wasn’t sure where we were or where we were headed but I quietly wished it was the East End Pinnacles.  My wish came true. There are two groups …Read More »

  • “Baby Shark” Spotting Off Monterey Bay—What It’s Like to Be a Citizen Scientist

    “Baby Shark” Spotting Off Monterey Bay—What It’s Like to Be a Citizen Scientist

    Baby shark. Doo doo doo doo doodoo. Since its release in November 2015 the original “Baby Shark” video has had over 2.2 billion YouTube views and the song is on the Billboard Top 100. Toddlers everywhere are snuggling baby shark plushies and adults are wasting lots of time at work uploading #babysharkchallenge posts. Most divers love sharks, but the “Baby …Read More »

  • A Retirement Retrospective

    A Retirement Retrospective

    This year marks my 35th as an underwater photographer and author. It has been an enjoyable and memorable career, and this seems to be a particularly good time to look back and reminisce about where I am, and how I got here. It all started during the summer of 1977 when I arrived in Berkeley, began my graduate studies, and …Read More »

  • They’re on the Move Again: Encountering Pacific Gray Whales 

    I know of no other wildlife excursions where seeing an entire animal is rare and viewing parts of it are exciting, photo-worthy events. Better yet, there is an entire industry devoted to it. It’s called whalewatching.  Like tens of thousands of others, I have stood on the deck of many a rocking boat hoping to see such clues to whales’ …Read More »

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