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Friday, March 2nd, 2012

The Marathon County Public Library wants to use funds from a $76,000 donation made to the library from a private estate donation for a new reef tank. The library is planning on a 750 gallon reef aquarium to be placed in the children’s section. The University of Wisconsin has proposed using the reef aquarium for an internship program for students of their marine biology education. The big kicker in the story is the library hopes to get national exposure by selecting the well known Vegas company Acrylic Tank Manufacturing (ATM) which would land them on the reality tv show Tanked. Animal Planet has not approved the $36,000 aquarium for Tanked as of yet. The popular tv series Tanked will start airing the second season of the reality show in August.

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

First place image by Alexis Tabah

Congratulations to Alexis Tabah, his picture has been chosen for picture of the year! His first place photo has won him a trip on the Solmar V, a 112 foot luxury live-aboard dive vessel. The photo contest was a huge success for WetPixel, a popular underwater photography magazine. The winning images received more than 2,500 votes each. You can see the other top images here.

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

A video uploaded Feburary 23, 2012 by Dana Wharf using the name DANAPOINTWHALEWATCH is making waves around YouTube, blogs and other social networks. Dana Wharf is a sport fishing and whale watching Adventure Company. The video catches a very large pod of common dolphins racing along side of the Dana Pride as it moved off the coast of Orange County, California. Many people that watch the video mistake the dolphin’s reactions as troubled or in distress. It is common for dolphins to race along the side of large and small vessels in a playful manner, although, pods as large as this are unusual. Some of the comments left on YouTube and other sites blame the boat for ramming into the middle of the pod with no regard for the dolphins safety.

Alisa Schulman-Janiger, who has spend many years researching marine mammals off Southern California, stated she has never witnessed common dolphins showing any negative reaction to boats. I’ve had many experiences with common dolphins chasing and playing along side of my 18’ flats fishing boat. Most of the time they pay little or no attention to use while we are out fishing, but on occasion they will run along side of our small boat within feet of the gunnels while we are on a plain. I’ve even had dolphins spend half a day following us for miles waiting to ambush any released fish. Often we have to trick them, one of us will splash noisily to lure the dolphins to one side of the boat so that the other can quietly release an undersized fish safely.

What do you think? More details on the story can be found here.

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

CREDIT: Sandra J. Raredon / Smithsonian Institution

A temporary exhibit at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History uses x-rays of fish from sharks to gar to study diversity in skeletal systems. The x-rays show that some fish have skeletons built from cartilage while others have skeletons built from bone. The exhibit is called “X-Ray Vision: Fish Inside Out”. The exhibit will be on display through August 5, 2012.

All the x-rays on exhibit are viable on flickr. You can read more on the exhibit here.

Tour Itinerary:
07/02/11- 01/08/12 Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, New Haven, CT
02/04/12- 08/05/12 National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC
08/25/12- 11/18/12 Lubeznik Center for the Arts, Michigan City, IN
12/08/12- 06/16/13 Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, PA
07/06/13- 09/29/13 Evansville Museum of Arts and Science, Evansville, IN
10/19/13- 01/12/14 Spartanburg County Library, Spartanburg, SC
02/01/14- 04/27/14 Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center,
Virginia Beach, VA
05/17/14- 08/10/14 Minnesota Marine Art Museum, Winona, MN
08/30/14- 11/23/14 California University of Pennsylvania, California, PA
12/13/14- 03/08/15 Discovery Place, Texarkna, TX

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

Pot-bellied seahorses have been successfully breeding at the NY Aquarium further strengthens the endangered species. This species of seahorses have a long history in traditional medicines which coupled with the pet industry has led it to near extinction. Currently the sales of the pot-bellied seahorse are prohibited under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITIES) of Wild Fauna and Flora. With the new breeding program showing signs of success we may see tank raised specimens hitting the market in the coming years. The pot-bellied seahorse is one of the larger seahorse growing to a shocking 13.5 inches making it a nice specimen in home aquariums. More on the breeding program can be read here.

Friday, February 24th, 2012

Orphek has stepped up their game, quickly racing towards the top of the LED aquarium lighting market. ReefTools recently introduced the Orphek PR-156 to our community, now we would like to introduce its big brother, the Orphek Nilus. The Nilus looks very similar to the PR-156 since Orphek maintained the stylish designed. The biggest changes are in the controller, it is now equipped with dimming functions capable of independently dimming the white and blue LEDs. This coupled with the controller’s timers gives the aquarist absolute control over the look of their reef. The controller can be programmed for multiple intensities through out the day creating a nice sunrise to sunset look. Orphek states the dimmer spent a year in research and design perfecting the fixtures ability to maintain the spectrum output while being dimmed. To obtain the “perfect” spectrum for SPS corals Orphek added additional diodes with varying colors. We are looking forward to the opportunity to see these in action.

Specifications:
• Wattage: 120 watts
• Ratio: 30 White LEDs, 22 Blue LEDs, 4 Red LEDs and 4 UV/true violet LEDs

SPECTROGRAPHS
• White LED: 14,000K-16,000K, ~100 lumen/watt
• Royal Blue LED: 450nm – 470nm
• Red LED: 640nm
• UV/True Violet LED: 380nm – 420nm
• Total Lumens: Over 9000 Lumens
• Equal to MH/HPS light 250w-400w

LENS OPTIONS
• Honey Comb 120 degrees

DIMENSIONS:
• Length: 24 inch x Width: 6.1 inch x Height 2.0 inch

Included with Fixture:
• Hanging kit

Friday, February 24th, 2012

A video was posted on YouTube last week showing an uncountable number of sharks migrating along the coast of Florida. The video was shot from a helicopter reportedly behind the Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach.

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Kent Marine stated on their website yesterday, February 22, 2012, that there is a quality concern with the Reef Carbon manufactured between December 5, 2011 and February 8, 2012. Apparently heavy metals, like copper, found their way into the carbon during mining. These metals will have negative affects on clams and stony corals. It is reported these effects have been witnessed with in a couple of hours after using the contaminated carbon. You can read the full product advisory and review a chart showing which products have been affected here.

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Nasa satellites have capture images of a giant underwater storm called an eddy off South Africa. The eddy stretches approximately 90 miles across and it was first spotted back in December. It was stated the storm poses no threat to sea life or shipping lanes, in fact it is believed the massive swirl will pull nutrient rich particles from the ocean’s floor to the surface. It could be Mother Nature’s way of spring cleaning.

Nasa - Terra satellite

Full story can be found here.

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Camouflaged octopus. Image Credit: SteveD.

Richard Baraniuk is a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Rice University. He has been studying the amazing ability of Cephalopods to camouflage in the hopes to create an artificial skin for military uses. A great video interview and the full story for your review: http://earthsky.org/biomimicry/richard-baraniuk-squid-skin-inspires-submarine-camouflage

SteveD’s photography can be found here.

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