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Marine Life & Conservation

OceanShot invites PADI to first-ever underwater panel



PADI Pros train with OceanShot partners for underwater coral reef panel at the Global Citizen Forum at COP28

PADI®. is joining OceanShot co-founders for the historic underwater panel on positive ocean change at the Global Citizen Forum, which is taking place alongside COP28 in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE December 6-7 2023. The first-of-its-kind underwater panel will dive deep into the importance of coral reef protection to elevate the urgent need for ocean action.

PADI’s CEO and President, Drew Richardson will join Dr. Brosnan and Mr. DeJoria at the Global Citizen Forum’s first-ever underwater panel to purposefully descend beneath the surface in the hopes of calling people around the globe to positive ocean action and inspiring them to both explore and save the ocean.

OceanShot is a coral reef ecosystem restoration project co-founded by globally-recognised marine scientist and climate risk expert Dr. Deborah Brosnan, and global philanthropist, environmentalist and entrepreneur John Paul DeJoria, launched in partnership with the Government of Antigua and Barbuda. The initiative uses technology that mimics the design and shape of natural reefs to restore coral and invite back marine life, as well as protect nearby coastal communities from storm surge and sea level rise.

Dr. Richardson is one of the most influential people in scuba diving and has transformed PADI’s mission to create a billion ocean TorchbearersTM.  who are taking local action for global impact and united by a shared vision to achieve balance between humanity and the ocean.

OceanShot’s first living-lab hub, designed to be a place where innovators can test their technologies aimed at environmental protection, was deployed in Antigua and Barbuda. In June 2021, the Global Citizen Forum adopted OceanShot as one of its supported flagship initiatives. This year, OceanShot’s co-founders invited PADI as a partner in its world-class restoration model.

“Coral reefs are among the most ecologically and economically valuable ecosystems that drive our blue economy,” says Dr. Richardson. “Scuba divers can explore beneath the surface and fuel ocean change as Torchbearers, taking part in a range of meaningful diver citizen-science actions driving real results. And as global citizens, we have the opportunity to be changemakers that inspire more innovative and positive solutions for the health of coral reefs, the ocean and our shared blue planet.”

“We’re doing this work because our oceans need us and we need them,” says Dr. Brosnan. “Humans have mapped the human genome, landed astronauts on the moon, and in less than twelve months developed a viable vaccine to combat a global pandemic. It is time to focus the same attention on our oceans with bold, ambitious, and achievable initiatives.”

PADI recently conducted a special underwater training session with Dr. Richardson, Dr. Brosnan and Mr. DeJoria in preparation for the upcoming underwater panel in December where they will share their knowledge and passion for ocean conservation with the world.

To learn more about the first underwater panel at the Global Citizen Forum visit

OceanShot is managed and operated by Dr. Deborah Brosnan. For more information, visit

About PADI 

PADI® (Professional Association of Diving Instructors®) is the largest purpose-driven diving organization with a global network of 6,600 dive centers and resorts, 128,000 professional members and more than 29 million certified divers to date. Committed to our blue planet, PADI makes the wonder of the underwater world accessible to all, empowering people around the world to experience, explore and take meaningful action, as Ocean Torchbearers, to protect the world beneath the surface. For over 50 years, PADI is undeniably The Way the World Learns to Dive®, setting the standard for the highest quality dive training, underwater safety and conservation initiatives while evolving the sport of diving into a passionate lifestyle. For divers by divers, PADI is obsessed with transforming lives and, with its global foundation, PADI AWARE, creating positive ocean change. Seek Adventure. Save the Ocean.


The life of a Great White Shark



Great White Shark

The great white shark, known scientifically as Carcharodon carcharias, embodies the apex predator of the ocean. This majestic creature’s life is a testament to survival, adaptability, and the intricate balance of the marine ecosystem.

Born in the waters off coastal regions, a great white shark begins its life as a pup within the safety of nurseries, typically found in warm, shallow waters. The pups, measuring around 5 feet in length at birth, are immediately equipped with an innate instinct for survival.

Great White Shark

As they grow, great whites embark on a journey, venturing into deeper and cooler waters, often covering vast distances across the ocean. These apex predators are perfectly adapted hunters, relying on their impressive senses to detect prey. Their acute sense of smell, aided by specialized sensory organs known as ampullae of Lorenzini, helps detect the faintest traces of blood in the water from several miles away.

Feeding primarily on seals, sea lions, and other marine mammals, great whites are known for their powerful jaws lined with rows of razor-sharp teeth. Their hunting techniques often involve stealth, utilizing their streamlined bodies to approach prey from below and striking with incredible speed and force.

Great White Shark

Despite their fearsome reputation, great whites play a crucial role in maintaining the health of marine ecosystems. As top predators, they help regulate the population of prey species, preventing overpopulation that could disrupt the balance of the food chain.

Reproduction among great white sharks is a slow and careful process. Females reach sexual maturity between 12 and 18 years of age, while males mature earlier, around 9 to 10 years old. Mating occurs through complex courtship rituals, with females giving birth to a small number of live pups after a gestation period of about 12 to 18 months.

Great White Shark

However, the life of a great white shark is not without challenges. Human activities, including overfishing, pollution, and habitat destruction, pose significant threats to their population. Additionally, despite their formidable presence, great whites are vulnerable and face dangers from entanglement in fishing gear and accidental bycatch.

Despite these challenges, great white sharks continue to inspire awe and fascination among scientists and nature enthusiasts. Their presence in the ocean serves as a reminder of the delicate balance and interconnectedness of marine life, emphasizing the need for conservation efforts to protect these magnificent creatures for future generations to admire and study.

Want to learn more about sharks? Visit The Shark Trust website:


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Marine Life & Conservation

Book Review: Sea Mammals



Sea Mammals: The Past and Present Lives of Our Oceans’ Cornerstone Species by Annalisa Berta

This is a book packed with information about some of the most iconic and charismatic marine species. I have a particular soft spot for the pinnipeds, seals and sea lions, due to some incredible diving encounters over the years. So these were the pages I first turned to.

Once picked up this book is hard to put down. Polar Bears, Narwhal, Sea Otters, manatees, whales and dolphins adorn the pages with beautiful photographs and illustrations. Each turn of the page lures you in to discover more about a species you love, one you want to learn more about, some you have never heard of and even includes the details of fascinating animals that are sadly now extinct.

I think what I love most about this book is how it is organised. Rather than simply lump the animals into taxonomic groupings, they are put into chapters that tell you a story about them. Whether it is the story of their evolution, how they were discovered, their biology, behaviour or need for conservation. Once you have decided on an animal to delve deeper into, each species has its own story, as well as key information about size, diet, distribution, habitat and conservation status.

There is plenty to enjoy in this delightful book. Plenty to learn too. As the cold dark nights draw in, I can see myself delving into this book time and time again. This is a perfect gift for anyone that loves the ocean and its inhabitants. Or just treat yourself.

What the publisher says:

From the gregarious sea otter and playful dolphins to the sociable narwhal and iconic polar bear, sea mammals are a large, diverse, and increasingly precious group. In this book, Annalisa Berta, a leading expert on sea mammals and their evolution, presents an engaging and richly illustrated introduction to past and present species of these remarkable creatures, from the blue whale and the northern fur seal to the extinct giant sperm whale, aquatic sloth, and walking sea cow.

The book features more than 50 individual species profiles, themed chapters, stunning photographs, and specially commissioned paleo-illustrations of extinct species. It presents detailed accounts of these mammals’ evolutionary path, anatomy, behavior, habitats, and conservation. And because these are key species that complete many food chains and have the widest influence of all sea life, the book also offers insights into a broad variety of marine worlds today and in the future.

About the Author:

Annalisa Berta is professor emerita of biology at San Diego State University. A specialist in the anatomy and evolutionary biology of marine mammals, especially baleen whales, she formally described a skeleton of the early pinniped Enaliarctos. She is the author of Return to the Sea: The Life and Evolutionary Times of Marine Mammals and the editor of the award-winning Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises: A Natural History and Species Guide.

Book Details

Publisher: Princeton University Press


Price: £25

ISBN: 9780691236643

Published: 26th September, 2023

Pages: 224

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