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Endangered Ocean Life

If mankind doesn’t realize it yet, it is up to us to save the endangered species and maintain the sanctity of our planet. We have to share this earth with plants and animals and this intricate and delicate system depends on each and every one of us to do our part. What is so upsetting is that creatures on both the land and sea are dying out en masse or going extinct.

The biggest threat to our ecosystem is mankind and if we don’t learn how to produce a proper balance, all will be lost. According to the IUCN, there are currently approximately 368 marine species that are either in danger of dying out or are already endangered. Here are just a few of those marine species that we should be doing everything in our power to save.

Hawksbill Turtle

Steller Sea Lion

One of the largest species of seal, the Stellar sea lion are located in the coastal waters in the North Pacific. Unfortunately, the sea lion has experienced a decrease of more than 60% because of both natural threats and human ones.

Hammerhead Shark

Found in the tropical regions of the world, hammerhead sharks have been poached and victimized for their fins. The process is one of the most horrific to see in the fishing world as fisherman catch them, drag them on board, and then cut their fins off as they are still alive, with the carcasses thrown in the water as the sharks bleed out. Although a ban has been imposed on shark finning in several countries, many ignore the bans because of the high demand for the fins in the Asian market. With little assistance to maintain their numbers, hammerhead sharks are struggling to survive.

Vaquita

Living primarily in the murky waters of the Baja Peninsula off the coast of Mexico, Vaquita is known as the smallest and most dangerous cetacean. Fisherman have heavily hunted them over the years and their numbers have been on the decline since the 40s. Current studies indicate that these creatures will be extinct very soon if these current levels continue. I would suggest investing in scuba diving packages as soon as possible in order to get a look at them first-hand before it is too late.

Blue Whale

As the largest mammal on the planet, blue whales migrate from one side of the world to the other every year, yet their numbers continue to decrease even with an international ban that was implemented in 1966.

Dive! Dive! Dive!

The passion I have for scuba diving cannot be denied and it has stayed with me over the years through ups and downs. I remember the first time I took a look through a scuba diving magazine and dreaming about doing it myself. It was a co-worker that initially got me interested in scuba diving and helped to spark my interest. After I showed even more interest than he intended, the next thing I knew, he was giving me books on scuba diving. By the end of reading the first book, I was hooked and my love for diving has only increased since that time.

Of course, I have learned to juggle my duties at work and all my other projects in order to have spare time for diving. It’s taken time to learn how to prioritize the things in my life and the things in my life that I want, but now that I’ve done that it has been easier to pick and choose my scuba activities.

Since deciding to dive into scuba diving, so to speak, I have taken adventure trips with co-workers, friends, and family, and I even can boast of having a certification now, giving me access to certain destinations throughout the world. I really do enjoy my experiences and the environment and so, I decided to capture these moments on film.

I invested in a camera and now I take photos of each dive I attempt as I don’t want to miss a thing. Capturing dives underwater is truly a rewarding experience and the beauty of the creatures and the fish and coral gardens cannot be expressed enough as it never quite does it justice. Mother Nature is always a sight to behold.

When it comes to scuba diving, there is always something new to learn and I have taken it upon myself to travel the world over to take up classes and go on trips that open me up to a new perspective on scuba diving. After scuba diving so often, now I am quite skilled at identifying different types of fish and categorizing them. To further my studies underwater, I even invested in some underwater photography courses, which are tailor-made for the interests of the divers.

In order to ensure that I don’t get bored with diving at the same place all the time, I have resorted to going on vacations to distant places to satisfy my urge for diving in the deep. Even if it is only for a few days or a long weekend, I never can complain about the experience. I have had some wonderful longer trips all over the world. A few of the highlights include:

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Greece

If deep sea diving amongst turtles and dolphins is your thing, then I highly suggest venturing to Greece to take in their sea life. From the month of April all the way through September, small groups of divers are able to visit and experience the aquatic life up close. Local species that you see live include all sorts of dolphins: short-beaked, striped, common, and bottlenose. There are also sunfish, loggerhead turtles and sometimes a few monk seals can be seen swimming nearby. Of course, I photographs of nearly all the sea creatures in this area and I recommend it to anyone that wants to experience the Mediterranean coast. And once you are done diving, there are so many islands off the coast of Greece that you can visit by ferries and affordably. I have made this one of my return trips and I am always eager to get back and soak in their sun.

The Philippines

I never knew this until recently, but seeing sea cows in their natural habitat is becoming harder to see and so I decided to visit The Philippines to see them while I had the opportunity. Also known as dugongs, they are extremely rare these days, but can be viewed during the months between March and July. I went there hoping to see at least a few since I know how shy they are, but luckily for me, an entire family had decided to nestle nearby and I was able to take a series of photos that I intend to turn into postcards in the future for friends and family.

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Challenges Facing Our World’s Oceans

The world needs to be aware of how badly we are treating Mother Nature. Currently, the threats that we face are no laughing matter and if we don’t do something fast, we won’t have much of an earth left to enjoy. I have taken it upon myself as an advocate for earth to do everything in my power to make people aware of what they can do now to protect our oceans and fish for the future of all mankind. But like many people, I myself am beginning to wonder if it is too late to save us all from the ultimate demise.

We all love enjoying to spend time boating, surfing, and walking on the beach and swimming in the oceans. But, when you really think about it, how well do we treat these areas? Why are we so negligent? Let me elaborate on the biggest threats to our largest bodies of water and what we can do to save them while we can.

Depletion of Fishing Stocks

Even though seafood and fish have been researched and found to be quite healthy for people, the shrinking amounts worldwide is cause for alarm as humans continue to overfish the largest bodies of water. According to FAO, we extract more than 80 million tons of seafood and fish from oceans, and it continues to grow by the year. Approximately 30% of fish stocks worldwide have either collapsed or are otherwise being exploited and there is no end in sight.

Statistics like these are upsetting to read about and it feels like there’s nothing we can do to turn things around. The biggest offenders are countries like Indonesia, China, and the United States. And what is even more shocking is that only 23 countries are responsible for 80% of seafood and fish production. Industrial mass fishing is the biggest problem to date, with more sea life caged up in the oceans and then used as feeding material.

The Acidity of Oceans

Carbon dioxide continues to elevate everywhere, and it has since the beginning of the 19th century and the era of industrialization. The reason why this is important is because the oceans are partly responsible for slowing the effects of global warming, similar to how trees help on land. In less than 150 years, the pH of seawater has dropped from 8.2 to 7.7.

For those that think this is nothing, it should be noted that this minor change has dramatically increased acidity in oceans and the creatures living in the waters have not been able to cope with these changes, with many species either not reproducing any longer or dying out completely.

Warm World

The oceans store CO2 and also heat, and with temperatures on the rise in oceans, the balance of Mother Nature is slightly off-kilter and it has harmed both underwater organisms and those living above sea level. If we are to hope for a real change, we have go to reduce emissions as much as possible. The question is if we are willing to make the sacrifices to make that a reality.

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