Join me in the cold, dark, life-sustaining NE Pacific Ocean to discover the great beauty, mystery and fragility hidden there.

Today’s Dive – a photo essay and ode to Bull Kelp

Kelp forests – where would we be without them?

Habitat for so many species, oxygen production, carbon dioxide buffering, navigation aid, food production, and then the astounding aesthetic beauty that bonds us from the surface to the depths.

For you, photos from today on both sides of the world bonded by Bull Kelp.


Waiting to dive with dive buddy Jacqui Engel (pictured here). The first shift of divers is in the water.

What to do but soak up the beauty?

So much beauty.

The audio backdrop . . . 3 Humpbacks exhaling, their blows rolling over the water together with the growls of Steller Sea Lions; gulls shrieking in competition for herring at the surface; and Pacific Harbour Seals occasionally groaning while basking in the sun. This is “Squiggle” (BCX0097) the Humpback. We, at the Marine Education & Research Society, have documented him since 1999.

Waiting just a little longer .

And they’re up! Here, buddy Dwayne Rudy surfaces.

And down we go, below the kelp. Here, so many Proliferating Anemones with babies under the protective canopy of their mother’s tentacles, and many Green Urchins.

Do you see the babies of different colours under their mother’s tentacles i.e. Pink moms with orange babies and vice versa. Unlike with Brooding Anemones, the babies of Proliferating Anemones can be of different ages i.e. they need not all be the same brood. Also, see the Blue-Lined Chiton? For detail on the differences between Brooding and Proliferating Anemones, see my blog at this link.

The we just hung under the surface, basking in the sun shining through the kelp. I tried to capture the beauty for you . . .

Under the canopy of Bull Kelp.

Time to go up after an hour’s blissful escape. Here is buddy Jacqui on our safety stop.

Then I photographed at the surface for at bit to try to capture the beauty of the kelp mirrored there. Thank you Jacqui for the photo.

Time to head back to the boat (seen here in the background, on the right).

Hello buddies! Left the right: Dwayne, Brenda, Natasha, Jacqui and Andy in our dive club’s boat. Dive club is the Top Island Econauts.

I guess when you frequently take photos of your buddies underwater, they are going to return the favour at the surface. Thank you Jacqui for this photo. 

When you’re happy and you know it. Thank you kelp for all you give (and to you Jacqui​ for the photo).

And below, for your amusement, Jacqui also videoed a strange marine mammal.

6 Responses to “Today’s Dive – a photo essay and ode to Bull Kelp”

  1. Linda Millar

    As always, I love your stories and photos. I have never noticed your fancy green skirt before. I’m sure it sets you apart from the other divers in “basic black”.


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