Beyond Black

OUR UNDERWATER WORLD IS FULL OF VIBRANT COLORS, interesting patterns and textures, and fascinating creatures. It’s a wild place that is unpredictable and simultaneously harsh and harmonious. Taking a camera into that world allows us to record snippets of beauty in ways that help us tell various stories. Learning to use your camera effectively takes […]

Oxygen Cleaning of Dive Gear: A Two-Part Series

IN THE PREVIOUS ARTICLE, we settled on the recommendation that equipment used to control any breathing gas mix containing 25 percent oxygen and above at typical scuba cylinder pressures should be designed and considered suitable for oxygen use. Possible debates aside, we’ll examine what oxygen cleaning means. How often should gear be oxygen cleaned, and […]

The Edge of Extinction

I WAS HOOKED THE FIRST TIME I saw a southern sea otter bobbing in the surf off the coast of California’s Big Sur. I didn’t know then that I would be as spellbound by these rare creatures decades later as I was at that very first sighting.

Popping the Question: What is a DSMB?

SURFACE MARKER BUOYS (SMBS) AND DELAYED SURFACE MARKER BUOYS (DSMBS) are common and essential safety devices. These brightly colored, inflatable tubes, sometimes called safety sausages, are critical pieces of equipment that divers should take on most dives. Divers most often use them as signaling devices to mark their locations below the surface and alert boat […]

Cuba’s Golden Fish

IT HAD BEEN A BUSY WEEK for the fish surveyors aboard the Avalon ll, and things were just beginning to wind down. The Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) team of 16 volunteer research divers had recorded population estimates for 246 fish species on 26 reef, seagrass, mangrove, and ironshore sites within the benevolent boundaries of […]

Trouble in Galápagos

DAN EMERGENCY SERVICES RECEIVED A CALL via satellite phone from a liveaboard anchored off a remote island in the Galápagos. A DAN member was concerned about their bunkmate exhibiting symptoms following the day’s dive activities. The diver had completed four dives that day. Although she began to show symptoms following the second dive, the inexperienced […]

Blue Heron Bridge

THE RELENTLESS AND POWERFUL NORTHWARD FLOW of the Gulf Stream’s clear, tropical waters provides Southeast Florida with beautiful and unique diving opportunities. Passing off the coast of Palm Beach County, the warmer, constantly flowing water nourishes and replenishes reefs and corals that support and attract an incredible diversity of marine life. The reefs offshore are […]

Diving With My Dad

I WAS 13 YEARS OLD THE FIRST TIME I WENT SCUBA DIVING. My family was on a trip to Cancun, and my dad took me and my sister, Carrie, who was 11 at the time, for a scuba lesson. We did a low-risk resort-style dive, going no deeper than 25 feet. But we loved the […]

Spine Health

LOWER BACK PAIN is one of the most common medical complaints. Estimates are that more than 500 million individuals worldwide experience lower back pain, making it the leading cause of disability. It is important to focus on good posture, strong core muscles, healthy weight, and a balanced range of motion front to back and left to […]

The Ocean Less Traveled

TALK TO ANY HUMAN UNDER THE AGE OF 13, and they have probably been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I was just 3 years old when I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian. Growing up on coasts — first Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and then Southeast Florida — I […]

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