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Diving in a Time Capsule

By Becky Kagan Schott

Q2 2021

Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary in Lake Huron off the northeastern coast of Michigan has nearly 100 known shipwrecks, and others are still being discovered. The oldest shipwreck there sank in 1849, but many wrecks are from the mid- and late 1800s to the early 1900s. The location, history and variety of ships — from wooden schooners to freighters — make Thunder Bay special. The wrecks are at various depths, ranging from the snorkel zone to recreational and technical diving levels.

DAN Member Profile: Tec Clark

By Tiffany Duong

Q2 2021

Dive legend Tec Clark has built a memorable career and legacy around training excellent divers. He describes his underwater experiences as “absolutely worshipful” and “otherworldly.” It’s the place where he feels closer to God than anywhere else on Earth. Helping others safely and professionally experience this same life-changing magic is his focus. Clark summed up the philosophy behind all his advice to new dive professionals: “Great training is the key to great diving. Don’t cut corners. Offer excellent training. Go beyond the standard.”

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A Slug’s Life

By Sarah Egner

Q2 2021

At the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk, Connecticut, nudibranchs have become storytellers for an issue facing our oceans that is difficult to understand yet imperative to know about: global climate change. The aquarium has taken a unique approach to educate the public on this global threat. Their new exhibit, A Slug’s Life: Facing the Climate Endgame, showcases the adored mollusk and runs through Sept. 6, 2021. The exhibit’s specific intent is to help guests understand the warnings that changing slug populations provide about the health of their habitats.

It Takes a Village

By Nevada Winrow, Ph.D., Brian Davis, Ph.D., Taylor-Symon Winrow, Courtlandt Butts and Dwayne Johnson

Q2 2021

Ocean literacy is important for the public to make informed decisions about ocean restoration efforts and to take increased individual responsibility in those efforts. Younger generations are crucial for developing an ocean literate society, but adequate ocean science education is a challenge for underserved and underfunded schools. Informal educational opportunities run by the Black Girls Dive Foundation (BGDF) fill the knowledge gap and are a resource for environmentally minded students.

Forging a Blue Economy

By Patricia Wuest

Q2 2021

For the founders of three of Indonesia’s dive resorts, the mission was clear: Protect the region’s natural resources by providing economic, educational and environmental benefits while empowering residents to participate in the process. These visionaries blazed a path for a “blue economy” — ensuring sustainable use of ocean resources while promoting economic growth and improved livelihoods for the people who live there.

Shallow-Water Arterial Gas Embolisms

By Joseph Gessert

Q2 2021

Pulmonary barotrauma can occur in a shallow swimming pool if a diver holds their breath during ascent or inadvertently floats to the surface while holding their breath. Most dive-related pulmonary barotraumas occur in compressed-gas diving due to pulmonary overinflation during a breath-hold ascent. Pulmonary barotrauma can occur even with normal breathing if there is an obstruction in the bronchial tree that prevents one lung segment’s normal ventilation.

The Case of Catastrophic Kelp Loss

By Melissa Gaskill

Q2 2021

For more than five years, divers and scientists along the U.S. West Coast have watched a disaster play out before their eyes. Sunflower sea stars fell victim to a wasting disease, which wiped out roughly 90 percent of the global population in 2013. Seven years later, scientists see no signs of recovery. Without the sea stars, the population of purple urchins that sea stars eat has exploded and mowed down entire forests of bull kelp. The West Coast experienced intense ocean warming from 2014 to 2017, and by 2015 divers began seeing urchin barrens — vast swaths covered in piles of spiny creatures and little else.

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