Tag: Marine biology

Ocean Conservation for Surfers: Why Care about Healthy Oceans?

I recently attended a conference sponsored by the European Association of Surfing Doctors; a group of surfers that are also medical doctors and health practitioners. Held near Biarritz in the beautiful Basque region of southern France I was tasked with telling the group why they should care about a healthy ocean and what they can do about it.…

Paleozoic Puzzle: the Origins of Abalone

Around the world they are  called abulón, awabi, bàoyú, ormer, ormeau, pāua, perlemoen, pauhi, haliote but all are abalone. Abalones (family Haliotidae) are all in the genus Haliotis (“ear shells”) a worldwide group of snails known for their beautiful iridescent shells and incredible tasty meat. In many places of the world abalone are (or were) multi-million dollar fisheries…

Science and Ethics in the Hawaii Marine Aquarium Trade

Conservation and conflict are irreparably linked as we address human’s widening impact on the planet. From a broader perspective we are moving forward as our new values and perspectives clash with the old. However, for those in the conservation trenches in may not seem like progress when being attacked at public meetings, creating enemies and, in some cases, receiving…

5 TV shows that inspired me to become a Marine Biologist

Becoming a marine biologist is hard work. It takes dedication, perseverance, intellect and inspiration. Growing up in the 1960s I regularly watched some classic TV shows that were the source of that early inspiration and helped compel me to pursue a career as a marine biologist. If you were conscious in the 1960s and 1970s then you likely remember these…

What Lies Beneath: the Waves, Reef and Marine Life of Maverick’s

The wave at Maverick’s is unique in many ways: its location, the geology and geomorphology of the reef, and the massive swells that surfers ride. In many ways Maverick’s allure is the story of its reef, which is legendary for creating both a perfect large wave and a reef seemingly designed to punish those attempting to ride it . As if the reef and wave weren’t enough you can add the fact that great white sharks frequent the area and occasionally clear the lineup with their presence. In the early days, before it became popular, surfers knew it would eventually kill people with its strong currents, long period swells, 10-15 wave sets and multi-layered inner reef full of valleys, holes and crevasses leading into a boneyard of exposed, jagged rocks. And it has.

Managing Nemo: Conservation and Conflict in the Hawaii Marine Aquarium Trade

In early 2012 I traveled with Washington State University Science Journalist extraordinaire Eric Sorensen to Hawaii so he could write an article on my research on the Hawaii aquarium trade, which has been ongoing since the mid-1990s. At the time of the article things were heating up between aquarium collectors and Snorkel Bob’s crusade to shut…