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

Posts tagged ‘video’

Bubbling Giants: Humpback Whales Bubble-Net Feeding

This is going to be worth the 4 minutes of viewing believe me!

Humpback Whales have many complex feeding strategies. In areas where current and birds do not force the feed together, there are Humpbacks that work as a team to corral the fish. This strategy includes an intense feeding call and making a net of bubbles.

This video was taken while I was with Pacific Wild in Caamano Sound off British Columbia’s Central Coast.

This is exactly the area where there is the potential of increased tanker traffic.

Knowing how important this area is – not only for at-risk Humpback, Fin and Killer Whales; but for human health and so much more – is a huge motivator to do all I can do reduce the demand for fossil fuels.

For more on the feeding strategies of Humpback Whales, please see our Marine Education and Research Society research at this link. It includes that we have published on a never-before-documented strategy we have dubbed “trap-feeding”.

Lion’s Mane Jellyfish – Sherlock You Are Wrong!

I had a wonderful opportunity to photograph and film a lion’s mane jellyfish (Cyanea capillata) today.


The 1.5 minute annotated video clip below will give context to my “Sherlock – You Are Wrong” statement.  
Enjoy!

 

 

Click here to see a short clip of the other big jelly species that can be found in our waters – the egg yolk jelly (Phacellophora camtschatica) at up to “only” 60 cm across. 

The Reason You Can’t See to the Bottom . . . .

The 1.5 minute video below is my attempt to bring the astounding biodiversity of the cold, rich waters of the NE Pacific Ocean to the surface.

If there is one thing I hope to achieve with my photography, it is to shatter the perception that — because you can’t see to the bottom — there must not be much life in these waters.

The opposite it true.

The reason you can’t see to the bottom is because there is SO much life.

Please feel free to share the video widely. Hopefully it will enhance people feeling a connection to the ocean, wanting to undertake further conservation, and understanding what is at stake with high risk projects that worship short term-economic gain at the cost of long-term environmental devastation — like increasing tanker traffic along British Columbia’s precious coast.

 

 

Infinite thanks to Hunter Molnar Stanton for her expertise in refining this video (and yes, there is a big typo 😉 ).

“Who Knew a Decomposing Whale Could Be So Beautiful?”

Indeed, a decomposing whale is THIS beautiful and THIS important to the environment.

The clip above, “Whale Fall (after life of a whale)” from Sharon Shattuckwill be of particular interest to environmental educators and those of you, who like me, have “handled” dead whales for the purposes of science and education. 

Thank you so much Lisa Spaven for bringing this to my attention and a special “shout out” to those who have worked at Telegraph Cove’s Whale Interpretive Centre dedicating themselves to preserving marine mammal skeletons. 

Information about the clip from Andrew Liszewski’s “Who Knew a Decomposing Whale Could Be So Beautiful”: “Whales can live for 50 to 75 years. But did you know that after they die, their decomposing bodies can support a whole community of organisms and other sea life for an additional 50 to 75 years?

Whale Fall is a short documentary on what happens to the largest mammal on the planet after it dies and sinks to Davy Jones’ locker. Created by Sweet Fern Productions for Radiolab, it’s not only fascinating on an educational level, but it’s also a feast for the eyes through the use of animation, paper cutouts and puppetry. I loved science growing up, but had the educational videos in biology class looked like this, I may have actually paid attention.”

Article on the importance of whale carcasses (includes link to science papers) – “Decades of Dinner – Underwater community begins with the remains of a whale; Science News Online; 2005. 

Sharks Among Us #3 – Meet the gang – From Rat Fish to Sixgills! (Video)

Great thanks to Rendezvous Dive Adventures for sharing this video with me! 

It’s a fantastic (7.5 minute) interview with Dr. Chris Harvey-Clark of the University of British Columbia and the Greenland Shark and Elasmobranch Education and Research Group (GEERG).

He discusses the shark species found in our cold-rich waters in the Pacific Northwest: “We have some of the largest species of sharks in the world swimming in these waters”.

Great video of sharks and I particularly appreciated Dr. Harvey-Clark’s explanation of the ecological link between rat fish and bluntnose sixgill sharks and, related to this, the latest research on the “ocean wanderings” of sixgills. 

I learned too about the Shark Observation Network where divers’ observations can help research. 

Wonder Worm

January 9th, 2011

While diving in the Plumper Island Group near Telegraph Cove, British Columbia, I chanced upon a white-ringed ribbon worm (Tubulanus albocinctus) fully out in the open. This is the first time I have been able to see the whole animal and marvelled at it’s length and colour. This “specimen” that I filmed was more than 1 metre long.  Apparently, they can reach 6 metres in length!

White-ringed ribbon worm found at about 30' (10m). Photo: Hildering

 

Ribbon worms have unsegmented bodies but what sets them apart from all other worm species is that they have a “proboscis”. The proboscis is a part of their gut that can be launched out to wrap around prey and then retract pulling the prey into the ribbon worm’s mouth.  Venom may also be associated with the proboscis. The white-ringed ribbon worm may prey on segmented worms, small crustaceans and maybe even some small fish. The proboscis can also be used for digging.

In the video clip (link below) you will see how the animal moves with powerful waves of muscular contraction (peristalsis). Small hairs called cilia also help it glide along.

In trying to find some basic facts about this species’ natural history, I discovered that very little is known about it even though it quite common in the Pacific Northeast. Although not able to find research to support this, I believe that the animal’s bright colour is a warning to predators that it tastes bad or is toxic.

I assure you I will be on the lookout for this wonder worm to try to learn more (I would love to see the proboscis in action)!

See the short video clip (30 sec) of my white-ringed ribbon worm encounter at this link.

More on ribbon worms at this link (includes a diagram of the internal anatomy).

Update January 12: A neighbour, Graham MacDonald, shared his observations of white-lined ribbon worms preying on rockweed isopods on a local sandy beach. He has repeatedly observed a black structure extending from the worm to the isopod and moving around on the isopod (likely the probosis). He noted that it appeared that the isopod was suffering (due to toxin or digestive juices?) and that it was a prolonged process. I will definitely be going to sandy beaches to see if I can capture this on film. Thank you Graham.

It’s Raining Fish?!

Juvenile yellow-tail rockfish.

Recently, I noticed a lot of splashing in a tideline off Telegraph Cove, BC. I share my observations with you via the little video clip at the link below.

You’ll note that it looks like big rain drops are hitting the water.

I discovered that what was creating the splashing were juvenile yellow-tail rockfish feeding on zooplankton. The zooplankton, including a small species of krill, had been concentrated at the surface by the big tidal exchange. There had been almost a 4 metre exchange between high and low tide (more than 12 feet).

I also discovered a very unique larval fish in the tideline that day but will share that discovery in a future “The Marine Detective”.

Click here for the video of the yellow-tail rockfish feeding in the tideline.

Enjoy!

California sea lions barking underwater – video!

California sea lion by Glen Miller

This posting is typical for why I set up this blog (and identity!): I want to share what I learn from my marine adventures.

Glen and I were recently diving off Northern Vancouver Island when we had a “swim-by” from several male California sea lions with a Steller sea lion among them.

Many of you know that the California sea lions are the darker and smaller species and that they bark, while Steller sea lions growl.

You can’t miss the barking of California sea lions when they are above the surface but, what I didn’t fully realize is  . . . that they bark underwater too!

I was able to capture this on video. Click here to share this experience with us.