Wet & Great: Underwater Photographer of the Year, 2019

WINNERS FOR THE UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR’S 2019 COMPETITION have been announced and as usual, the results are stunning. Drawing entries from around the world, the United- Kingdom-based group judges photos in eight categories – Wide-Angle, Macro, Portrait, Compact, Behavior, Black & White and Up and Coming – plus three British Waters categories, Wide Angle, Macro and Compact. Here are several samples from this year’s winners. SEE THEM ALL You can view the all

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Right Whale Calves, Deep-Diving Beaked Whales, Migrating by Memory

LINKS TO INTERESTING STUFF ON THE WEB – CETACEAN EDITION “Seven North Atlantic Right Whale Calves Spotted So Far This Year,” The Scientist    The number is still too low to be sustainable, but last year it was zero, so it’s promising. “Beaked Whales Are the Deepest Divers,” New York Times   Not that much is known about them, but they dive deeper and can stay longer than any other marine mammal.  “Migrating blue whales rely on

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A Great White Shark Swim, Octopus Farming, Faster Fish

INTERESTING STUFF FROM AROUND THE WEB A marine biologist snorkeled with a great white shark, even touching it. She called it “magic.” Others call it risky behavior and tell you to please not try it. Story and video, Washington Post. An anomaly in our age of global warming, a deep region of the Pacific Ocean is actually cooling. It’s because of the very slow churn of the Great Ocean Conveyor Belt; the water in question

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Jellies as Prey, Benny the Beluga, Time-sharing Dolphins

INTERESTING STUFF ON THE WEB Jellyfish have generally been regarded as more nuisance more than key players in the ocean food web. But they may be much more significant than has been previously thought, according to a study described in the online magazine Anthropocene. While they have long been considered “tropic dead ends” ignored by predators, in fact they’re regularly consumed by marine life as diverse as fishes, penguins, turtles, crabs, octopuses, sea cucumbers and

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HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Happy Holidays from Poseidon’s Web! May your 2019 include lots of bubbles!  Ralph Fuller, Editor & Publisher Photo: A Panamic cushion star (Pentaceraster cumingi), found mostly in the eastern Pacific along the American coast, from the Gulf of California to northern Peru. This guy photographed in the Galapagos Islands. Sometimes referred to as a knobby sea star. I.D. REFERENCE:  “Pentaceraster cumingi,” Wikipedia.

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These Humpbacks Let Seabirds Bring the Prey

OFF THE COAST OF CANADA’S VANCOUVER ISLAND, HUMPBACK WHALES have developed a new, low-energy approach to collecting their daily 2,500 kg of delectable edibles like herring. Kicking back and remaining stationary, these humpbacks let seabirds bring the prey to them. The scientists who have documented the new behavior have termed it “trap-feeding,” after the plant world’s Venus fly traps. CONVENTIONAL FEEDING TECHNIQUES Humpbacks (Megaptera novaeangliae) are baleen whales – that is, they earn their livings by

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Coral Reefs Ring, Scientists Say

CORAL REEFS “RING,” ACCORDING TO NEW RESEARCH. You may not hear it above your bubbles or the cacophony of surges or the clacking of snapping shrimp that contribute to the sounds we hear underwater. But, if listened to properly, the reefs may be able to tell us about their health. IT’S THE BUBBLES More specifically, algae on the reef produces ringing sounds as it goes about its business of photosynthesizing H2O molecules into simple-sugar nutrients

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A Newly Discovered Coral Reef on America’s Doorstep

A NEWLY DISCOVERED CORAL REEF off the U.S.’s mid-Atlantic coast  stretches for some 85 miles, dense with stony Lophelia pertusa, a branching deep-sea, cold-water coral. A half-mile below the ocean surface, the “new” reef has “mountains” of coral, according to researchers. It’s situated about 160 miles off Charleston, S.C. DEEP SEARCH – A VOYAGE OF DISCOVERY The newly discovered coral reef was identified by scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other agencies as

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Species Names: Why the Scientific Naming System Matters

THE COMMON DOLPHIN COULD BE THE POSTER FISH FOR THE SCIENTIFIC SYSTEM OF SPECIES NAMES. Yep, poster fish, not one of the 40 or so species of the charismatic marine mammals. This one’s definitely a fish, despite its common name. The fishy dolphin is shaped vaguely like a baseball bat with a long dorsal fin and a dour expression. Found in open waters around the world, it’s regarded as a good sport fish, as a

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The Roadway of Life – an Essay on Connection

HERE’S AN IDEA: LET’S PAY ATTENTION TO THE HISTORY OF SPONGES. And sea urchins, and how much like us they are. And, for that matter, sea jellies. They’re all part of the roadway of life. This is a personal view, perhaps a sentimental one. But, it’s about a way of looking at life under the sea, as signposts on the roadway of evolution that led to us. Understanding it helps us appreciate the watery world we are

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