Recent Articles

  • Diving With Blue Sharks

    Diving With Blue Sharks

    Blue sharks (Prionace glauca) are among the easiest sharks to identify. With their thin, sleek bodies — metallic blue on the tops and sides, snow white underneath — they are nearly unmistakable. In addition, blues have long pointed snouts, large round eyes and scythe-like tails. Their pectoral fins are exceptionally long. Blues are members of the largest shark family, Carcharhinidae, …Read More »

  • The Art of Fish Portraiture

    The Art of Fish Portraiture

    Of all of the possible underwater subjects fish can be among the most elusive. It may be difficult to get the proper angle for that once-in-a-lifetime nudibranch shot, or you may not be able to communicate effectively with your underwater model. Fish, however, rarely hold still and they’re lousy at following instructions. They require the photographer to exhibit the most …Read More »

  • It’s Good to Have the Blues

    It’s Good to Have the Blues

    In California we are fortunate to have a variety of sharks that inhabit our coastal waters. It is the blue shark, Prionace glauca, a species that lives in the waters of the open sea that I want to comment on here. Graceful swimmers, blues are sleek, slender and nothing short of absolutely stunning especially when sighted on sunny days in …Read More »

  • San Diego UnderSea Film Exhibition Oct. 9-10

    San Diego UnderSea Film Exhibition Oct. 9-10

    October 9th and 10th mark the upcoming 16th Annual San Diego UnderSea Film Exhibition (SDUFEX). The two-night event will feature around 30 of the best underwater short films submitted this year, and will be emceed by renowned underwater imager and author Marty Snyderman. Short film entries from many well-known underwater imagers such as Bob Cranston, Eric Hanauer, Simon Spear and …Read More »

  • Knowing and Catching California Spiny Lobster

    Knowing and Catching California Spiny Lobster

    Lobster season opens Saturday, October 3, and many California divers are eagerly awaiting it. This article provides information on the life cycle of these savory crustaceans as well as tips and techniques that will help you catch them. First, let’s take a closer look at Panulirus interruptus, aka the California spiny lobster. The most obvious difference between it and the …Read More »

  • Harboring a Soft Spot for The Harbor Seal

    Some marine creatures are easier to love than others. Two of my favorites are the little white sea urchins that decorate themselves with shells and pebbles and the proliferating (also called brooding) anemones whose babies live on their bodies until they are old enough to crawl away and fend for themselves. That anemones could have parenting skills is amazing. I …Read More »

  • Photographer’s Mantra: Get Close. Get Low. Shoot Up.

    Photographer’s Mantra: Get Close. Get Low. Shoot Up.

    Please envision yourself diving along your favorite California reef. The sea is calm, the water clear, and the sun shines bright. Out of the corner of your eye a once-in-a-lifetime subject swims by right in front of your camera. It could be a whale, a shark, or a tiny fish that has never been photographed. You know that if you …Read More »

  • Top Ten Tips to See More Fish

    Top Ten Tips to See More Fish

    California reefs are full of fascinating critters adorned in living color. Our fish are among the most colorful and interesting and as conspicuous as they may be, many divers see only a fraction of the fish in residence. Here are a few tips to see more fish 10) Stay off the bottom. Divers who swim on or right off the …Read More »

  • The Horn Sharks, Heterodontus: A “Different” Kind

    The Horn Sharks, Heterodontus: A “Different” Kind

    Back in my early days of diving, a couple of men I knew sported necklaces featuring a single horn shark spine. Luckily, the days of West Coast divers killing harmless sharks for jewelry didn’t last long.  Horn sharks (Heterodontus francisci) are members of the order Heterodontiformes (bullhead sharks) and the family Heterodontidae. The genus name, Heterodontus, comes from two Greek …Read More »

  • Cnidarians Known as Hydroids: Animals Looking Like Plants

    Once again we dive into Cnidaria, a large phylum that contains approximately 10,000 species. Phylum members include many animals that attract attention because of their bright colors: sea anemones, corals, sea pens, gorgonians and jellyfish. These creatures can afford to flaunt their beauty because most of them have defensive polyps loaded with nematocysts (also called cnidocytes) that can fire venomous …Read More »

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