Monday, May 24, 2010

Gary Stokes Mantas in Peril - Conservation Media

Kudos to Gary Stokes from Oceanic Love for a series of conservation videos featuring the oceans.

Our personal favourite of this well edited series is "Mantas in Peril." First person eco crisis reporting often comes back with parts of the story that few in the wider conservation audience are aware of, such as the Asian market for manta and mobula "gill rakers."

Gary and his team expose this dark market trade in animal parts to the world.

Warning: This video series contains graphic images.

Shark Diver Blog - Whale Shark Oil Story

When news of the Gulf oil spill first broke last month my thoughts quickly went to the whale sharks in the region.

I did an online search of previous Gulf whale shark posts we had done here at Underwater Thrills and discovered the runaway oil well was right in the middle of prime feeding and migrating habitat for these animals.

I posted a thought here about migrating whale sharks on April 25th.

For the general public at that time this disaster was happening "out of sight and out of mind." By bringing whale sharks into the story I had hoped to highlight a wider problem for all vulnerable Gulf species affected by this spill.

After realising this disaster was quickly becoming the "mother of all spills" I returned to the Gulf whale shark story on May 14th and did an in depth interview of Dr. Eric Hoffmayer, shark biologist at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory. He and his staff were very instrumental in highlighting the immediate problem for whale sharks.

This map and overlay was provided by his lab detailing one species exposure to an estimated 70,000 barrels of oil a day in the region. It was just what was needed to bring an "out of sight out of mind" eco disaster home.

After I posted the story "Prime Time for Whale Sharks at Ground Zero," it received a boost from fellow Blue Bloggers Richard Theiss and Pete Thomas on May 17th.

The major media ran with it locally and then nationally soon after.

May 18th Fox News

May 19th MSNBC

May 19th KATC

May 19th Associated Press

May 19th The Statesman

A Google search for "Biggest fish very vulnerable to spill" will return 1000's re posts of the same story we initially broke back on the 14th of the month.

What's interesting to me as a Blue Blogger covering sharks is the ability of our industry to shape and move a story. One more example of sharks helping people to understand our oceans.

Thanks to both Richard and Pete for the timely Blue Blog boost. I think we had an impact.

Patric Douglas CEO

British Petroleum - Fun Activities For Oil Spill

In case you're sick of 24/7 Oilmegedden coverage coming out of the Gulf, here's some fun BP oil related activities for you to do this week.

For instance, we have installed this live video feed from the well head at 5000 feet. Courtesy of BP and branded with their logo, you can watch the unfolding drama live, and even see unfortunate deep water sharks as they blunder into the plume.

Speaking of Logo's

For a more creative outlet this week, Greenpeace is asking for submissions to help redesign BP's logo, guaranteed fun.

You can submit your design here, and these are a few of the submission to date. We are featuring one of the newer logo's uploaded today.

That's it for now. Not much more to report from the Gulf, another 70,000 barrels streaming into the ocean, another day in the life of America's Chernobyl.

Guy Harvey Ultimate Shark Challenge - Media Coverage

Ongoing media coverage of the Guy Harvey Ultimate Shark Challenge which made history this week in Florida:

Potstickers? Check - Singapore Style Scorpians? What!?

Thanks to Wendy O'Malley, who I have known since my days in St.Thomas, I got introduced recently to Typhoon Restaurant in Santa Monica.

Wendy is a pilot. During her travels she often eats at restaurants on the field (based on or near airstrips) with Typhoon having some of the most unique gastronomic offerings I have ever seen.

I am including the menu for your review.

You'll note the standard offerings in the starters section, from there you mosey on over to the Insects section.

Sure beats sharks fin, bon appetite.

Patric Douglas CEO