california

Sheephead: The Bold Rogue of the Kelp Forest

When I first came upon a male California sheephead, I thought I had wandered into the neighborhood of the local bully. The adult sheephead (Semicossyphus pulcher) are bigger than many fish of the Central and Southern California rocky reefs and kelp forests. With a big, blunt, black head, red mid-section, and black tail he looks at you with alert eyes, a sense of cool detachment and a mouthful of long, crooked teeth. Itʼs not just his appearance that is a bit intimidating, itʼs his attitude. […]

Safe Abalone Diving

Each spring Northern California divers look forward to the beginning of abalone season with the exuberance of children waiting for Santa Claus. With good reason since abalone are one of the tastiest shellfish that you will ever harvest in California and they are still very abundant. Although diving, in general, and abalone diving, specifically, are very safe activities, a small number of abalone divers seem to get hurt each year. The three biggest safety issues in abalone diving are big seas, kelp, and alcohol. Most […]

MPAs — It’s Been A Long Time Coming…

Over 13 years ago a small group of dedicated conservationists gathered together to begin drafting and lobbying for the passage of the bill which would institute a comprehensive network of marine protected areas in California.  It began in 1997 with a landmark agreement to provide significant protection to the abalone resource which was followed closely by the passage of the Marine Life Management Act which dealt with fisheries regulation. This was followed shortly by the passage of the Marine Life Protection Act and after almost […]

Ventura Co. Sheriff’s Dept. Search and Rescue Dive Team 2011 Underwater Academy

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department Underwater Search and Rescue Team is seeking qualified SCUBA divers who are skilled and reliable and willing to volunteer their time, resources, and efforts in a commitment to their community.Prospective candidates must attend the orientation session for the Underwater Academy on Friday evening, February 25 at 7:00 PM at the Sheriff’s Academy, located at 275 Eubanks Street (Eubanks and Durley) on the grounds of the Camarillo Airport. Course Fee: $250.00 to offset cost of the training.In order to be eligible […]

Ventura County Sheriff’s Dept. Search and Rescue — Dive Team 2011 Underwater Academy

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department Underwater Search and Rescue Team is seeking qualified SCUBA divers who are skilled and reliable and willing to volunteer their time, resources, and efforts in a commitment to their community. Prospective candidates must attend the orientation session for the Underwater Academy on Friday evening, February 25 at 7:00 PM at the Sheriff’s Academy, located at 275 Eubanks Street (Eubanks and Durley) on the grounds of the Camarillo Airport.   Course Fee:  $250.00 to offset cost of the training. In order […]

How to Photograph Gorgonian Sea Fans

In Southern California waters we are blessed with temperate waters that encourage the growth of gorgonian sea fans. While they grow in branches that reach out from the reef, they are actually not a plant but rather a tightly grouped colony of tiny simple animals knows as polyps. The animals are a member of the Phylum Cnidaria animal group that also consists of anemones, jellies and corals. Much like their cousins they are very simple animals that consist of not much more than tentacles, a […]

How to Photograph Sea Lions by Dale Sheckler

The California seas are full of marine animals that can be a challenge to photograph. Personally, for me one of the most difficult is the sea lion. They are fast and they are dark. And they are smart. Back in the day I burned a lot of film on these funny guys. I have had a bit more luck with digital, but that is only because of the ever-present friend of the underwater electronic photographer: the delete button.  I have met some excellent underwater photographers […]

Nor-Cal 2010 Diving Conference — September 25

Sponsored by All About Scuba dive shop in Fairfield, the First Annual Nor-Cal Diving Conference is a one-day event intended to bring the diving public into closer contact with experts in the field. A number of speakers will be giving in-depth presentations of dive gear, free-diving, artificial reefing with ships, computers, and rebreathers. Representatives will be present from TUSA, Waterproof, Aqualung, California Ships To Reefs, and more. The event will take place at Fairfield Inn and Suites in Fairfield. Check-in begins at 6:45 a.m. With […]

White Shark Warning Issued for Santa Barbara Island

Officials at the Channel Islands National Park have issued the following warning: “Great white sharks have been observed in this area attacking California sea lions. There have been no shark attacks on humans. There have been three attacks on California sea lions by great white sharks in the past few months including one at the Santa Barbara Island Landing Cove and two offshore of Cat Canyon on the southeast side of the island. The public is duly warned to enter the water at their own […]

3Rs Beach Diving Workshops ? August 7, 14, 21 and more

Rocks, Reefs and Rips program (3Rs) is a mini-course to familiarize divers with popular beach dive sites and improve beach diving skills. Summer sessions in the Greater Los Angeles metropolitan area will take place: Aug. 14 at Point Dume, Sept. 11 at White Pt., and October 9 at Nicholas Canyon. For the San Diego area, sessions will take place: Aug. 7 at Hospital Point and Aug. 21 at Casa Beach. Instructors will demonstrate and supervise proper surf entry and exit procedures, explain unique aspects of […]

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