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2023 Ocean Art Underwater Photo Competition Announced

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Ocean Art

The Underwater Photography Guide is delighted to announce that it is accepting entries for the 2023 edition of the annual Ocean Art Underwater Photo Competition – the 12th annual Ocean Art competition!

This year’s competition features over $110,000 in prizes, making Ocean Art the world’s largest and most prestigious underwater photo competition. The competition attracts amateur to pro photographers across the globe. Fourteen categories, including new underwater fashion photography and underwater digital art categories, ensure all photo disciplines and cameras compete fairly, while the 50+ winning images create a portfolio of the best underwater photos of the year.

Ocean Art prizes are provided by some of the world’s top scuba diving resorts, liveaboard dive yachts, and underwater photo gear manufacturers. Grand prizes include a liveaboard dive cruise on the M.Y. Oceanic in Komodo, Flores, Alor, or the Banda Sea; a liveaboard dive cruise on the S.M.Y. Ondina in Raja Ampat, North Banda Sea, Triton Bay, Halmahera, or Cenderawasih Bay; a 10 night liveaboard dive trip aboard the Damai I or Damai II in Indonesia; a 7 night dive package for two at Alami Alor Dive Resort in Alor, Indonesia; a 14 night dive package at the new White Sands Beach Resort in Lembeh with Eco Divers; a7 night liveaboard diving package in Palau aboard the Solitude One; a 7 night stay in Papua New Guinea with Walindi Plantation Resort; a 7 day, 16 dive adventure for two in Raja Ampat with Meridian Adventure; a 7 night liveaboard dive trip with Bilikiki Cruises in the Solmon Islands; a 10 day dive trip with Mermaid Liveaboards in Bali & Komodo; a 7 night dive package to Truk Lagoon with Master Liveaboards; an 8 night all[1]inclusive dive package in Bohol, Philippines with Magic Oceans Dive Resort; a 4 night dive package at the Solitude Lembeh Dive Resort in Lembeh, Indonesia; two Sea & Sea YS-D3 Duo strobes; an Ikelite DS 230 Strobe with a modeling light; 15 bottles of Li Lé Blue Watersports Hair Care for Divers; and a variety of gift certificates from Bluewater Photo and Bluewater Travel. Premium travel prizes are provided by El Galleon/Asia Divers (Philippines), Explorer Ventures Fleet (Turks & Caicos), Andean Travel Company (Galapagos), Villa Markisa (Bali, Indonesia), Anthony’s Key Resort (Roatan, Honduras), Kusu Island Resort (Kusu Island, Indonesia), Luxury Yacht Maldives (Maldives), Tawali Leisure & Dive Resort (Milne Bay, Papua New Guinea), Crystal Blue Dive Resort (Anilao, Philippines), Atmosphere Resorts & Spa (Dumaguete, Philippines), Aiyanar Beach & Dive Resort (Anilao, Philippines), Presidente Intercontinental Hotel (Cozumel, Mexico), Spice Island Divers (Ambon, Indonesia), Sea Saba (Saba, Caribbean), Avalon Outdoor (Cuba) Eco Pro Divers (Maldives), and Mexico Liveaboards (Baja California, Mexico).

This year we have two new categories! Our original Underwater Art category has been split into an Underwater Digital Art category and an Underwater Fashion category. This will give two very different and unique art forms their own categories, while allowing complete freedom in post[1]processing. Ocean Art 2023 consists of 14 categories total, with the top categories including Wide Angle, Macro, Marine Life Behaviour and 3 corresponding compact camera categories, giving underwater photographers of all levels a chance to win a great prize. Unique categories include Black & White, Marine Life Portrait, Cold/Temperate Water, Blackwater, Underwater Conservation, and Nudibranchs.

Winners from each category will be able to rank the prizes they would like to receive, making it more likely that each winner will receive a prize they desire.

Judges include world-renowned underwater photographers Tony Wu, Marty Snyderman, and Mark Strickland. Marty Snyderman is an Emmy winner with work appearing in top publications like National Geographic. Tony Wu is a renowned underwater photographer and author of Silent Symphony. Mark Strickland is a published author, award winning underwater photographer, and photo specialist at Bluewater Photo. The competition is organized by Nirupam Nigam of Bluewater Photo, Bluewater Travel, and the Underwater Photography Guide.

Photos must be submitted before the deadline of 23:59PM PST on November 30, 2023.

We look forward to your participation. Information can be found on our Ocean Art Photo Competition page at http://www.uwphotographyguide.com/ocean-art.

Marine Life & Conservation Blogs

Book Review: Plankton

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Plankton: A Worldwide Guide by Tom Jackson and Jennifer Parker

This is a book that jumps off the shelf at you. The striking front cover demands that you pick it up and delve further, even if you may not have known you wanted to learn more about the most diminutive life in our ocean, plankton!

Small it might be. Much of the imagery in the book has been taken under huge magnification. Revealing stunning beauty and diversity in each scoop of “soup”. There is lots to learn. Initial chapters include interesting facts about the different vertical zones they inhabit, from sunlight to midnight (the darkest and deepest areas). I loved finding out more about the stunning show that divers oft encounter on night dives – bioluminescence.

The black water images are wonderful. So this is a book you can have as a coffee table book to dip in and our of. But, these tiny organisms are also vital to our very survival and that of all the marine life we love. They provide half the oxygen produced on our planet. They are also responsible for regulating the planets climate. And for a shark lover like me – they are food for charismatic sharks and rays like the Basking Shark and Manta Ray, along with a huge number of other species. This book contains great insight into their biology, life cycles, migration, and how the changes in currents and sea temperatures affects them.

This is a book that is both beautiful and packed with information about possibly the most important group of organisms on our planet. Anyone interested in the ocean should have it one their shelves.

What the publisher says:

Plankton are the unsung heroes of planet Earth. Passive drifters through the world’s seas, oceans, and freshwater environments, most are invisible or very small, but some are longer than a whale. They are the global ocean’s foundation food, supporting almost all oceanic life, and they are also vitally important for land-based plants, animals, and other organisms. Plankton provides an incomparable look at these remarkable creatures, opening a window on the elegance and grace of microscopic marine life.

This engaging book reveals the amazing diversity of plankton, how they belong to a wide range of living groups, and how their ecology, lifestyles, and adaptations have evolved to suit an enormous range of conditions. It looks at plankton life cycles, the different ways plankton feed and grow, and the vast range of strategies they use for reproduction. It tracks where, how, and why plankton drift through the water; shares perspectives on migrations and population explosions or “blooms” and why they happen; and discusses the life-sustaining role of plankton in numerous intertwined food webs throughout the world.

Beautifully illustrated, Plankton sheds critical light on how global warming, pollution, diminishing resources, and overexploitation will adversely impact planktonic life, and how these effects will reverberate to every corner of our planet.

About the Authors:

Tom Jackson is a science writer whose many popular books include Strange Animals and Genetics in MinutesJennifer Parker is a zoology and conservation writer and the author of several books. Andrew Hirst is a leading expert on plankton whose research has taken him around the world, from the Antarctic to Greenland and the Great Barrier Reef.

Book Details

Publisher: Princeton University Press

Hardcover

Price: £25

ISBN: 9780691255996

Published: 9th April, 2024

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Marine Life & Conservation

Dive with a Purpose: Shark Guardian’s Expedition Galapagos

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Shark Guardian has just unveiled their largest and most exciting expedition yet: a seven-night, eight-day adventure in August 2026 aboard the Galaxy Diver II, a state-of-the-art
vessel specifically designed for divers exploring the enchanting waters of the Galapagos
Islands. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to engage deeply with marine
conservation in one of the world’s most revered diving destinations.

Shark Guardian is a UK registered charity dedicated to protecting sharks and marine
ecosystems worldwide. Founded by marine biologists and conservationists, Brendon
Sing and Liz Ward-Sing, Shark Guardian leads educational programs, research projects,
campaigns and expeditions aimed at fostering a better understanding and respect for
marine life. Their work spans several continents and focuses on direct action,
education, and advocacy.

Shark Guardian’s ethos revolves around the concept of “diving with a purpose.” This
philosophy underscores the importance of not just experiencing the wonders of the
underwater world but actively learning and contributing to its preservation. Participants
in Shark Guardian expeditions engage in citizen science projects, which involve
collecting data that supports ongoing research and conservation efforts. These
activities empower divers to make a tangible difference, turning each dive into an act of
conservation.

One of the newer additions to the Galapagos diving scene, the Galaxy Diver II, is
specifically tailored for divers. Its design prioritises comfort, safety, and environmental
responsibility. The vessel boasts modern amenities, spacious dive decks, and the latest
navigational technology, ensuring that every dive is not only memorable but also has
minimal environmental impact.

A highlight of this expedition is the opportunity to dive at Wolf and Darwin islands,
renowned for their vibrant, untouched marine ecosystems and as a haven for large
pelagic species. These islands are famous for their schools of hammerhead sharks,
whale sharks, and manta rays, offering spectacular diving that attracts enthusiasts from
around the globe.

Shark Guardian have developed this trip to ensure a hassle-free experience. The
expedition package also includes internal flights from Quito, Ecuador, to the Galapagos,
plus accommodation in Quito before and after the trip. This allows divers to relax and
enjoy the experience without worrying about logistics.

Participants will join a diverse group of passionate divers and conservationists. This trip
offers a unique opportunity to network with like-minded individuals who are eager to
learn about and contribute to marine conservation. It’s a chance to share experiences,
knowledge, and a commitment to protecting the marine world.

sharks

Shark Guardian is offering an early bird price available until May 31st 2024. This special
rate provides a fantastic opportunity to secure a spot on this exclusive expedition at a
reduced cost. Availability is limited, so interested divers are encouraged to act quickly
to ensure they don’t miss out. All the details can be found on their WeTravel page, where
bookings can be made easily and payment instalments are available.

Expedition Galapagos, aboard the Galaxy Diver II offers more than just a diving
holiday—it is an investment in both personal and planetary well-being. By participating,
divers not only witness the majesty of one of the world’s premier diving locales but also
contribute to its preservation for future generations.

Find out more about Shark Guardian at www.sharkguardian.org.

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Experience the Red Sea in May with Bella Eriny Liveaboard! As the weather warms up, there’s no better time to dive into the crystal clear waters of the Red Sea. Join us on Bella Eriny, your premier choice for Red Sea liveaboards, this May for an unforgettable underwater adventure. Explore vibrant marine life and stunning coral reefs Enjoy comfortable accommodation in our spacious cabins Savor delicious meals prepared by our onboard chef Benefit from the expertise of our professional dive guides Visit our website for more information and to secure your spot: www.scubatravel.com/BellaEriny or call 01483 411590 More Less

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