Ocean Plankton- What is It?

marine-photoplanktonOcean plankton is a very important park of the ocean’s ecosystem. They are comprised of several organisms that are not able to swim across against the current, and they are food for several large ocean creates such as whales and many types of different fish. Plankton is made of bacteria and algae, protozoa and jelly fish. Alive and thriving in many different shapes and sizes, plankton are simply plants and animals that float near the top of the water and flows with the ocean’s tides and currents. Plankton literally means ‘wanderer’ in Greek.

Plankton produce their own nutrients by a system called photosynthesis. The sunlight reaches them where they live, at the top of the ocean. If you look at even the top of a pool you’ll see some plankton or tiny organism swimming around. Over billions of years, plankton has evolved to keep afloat on the surface of the water. For example, some plankton grow their own air bubbles to stay afloat. Some of them have developed the ability to produce oil to keep the plankton floating on the top of the water as well. It’s really quite fascinating, and plankton are such an important part of the sea’s ecosystem.


Meroplankton is only plankton for the first part of their life cycle. It comes from larvae from fish and crustaceans. Plankton is divided into the following categories by scientists:


Live near the surface of the water and thrives from photosynthesis. An example are diatoms.


These plankton are small protozoans or metazoans. For example, a zooplankton is a crustaceans. Protozoans feed off phytoplankton, and their larvae creates Meroplankton as mentioned before.

Bacterioplankton, bacteria plankton

Mycoplankton, fungi and and or fungus organisms

These different types of plankton simply breaks up the plankton community into a broader system that has producer, consumer, and recycler groups.


Plankton can be found in oceans, seas, lakes, and ponds. Local amounts of plankton varies from the current of the ocean to the season of the year. The biggest thing that has an impact on plankton is availability of sunlight to allow for photosynthesis and then growth. Every single plankton ecosystem is as strong as it’s energy from the sun, or solar energy. Plankton is most abundant in surface waters that have lots of light.

The second biggest influence on plankton is the availability of nutrients in the area. Sunlight comes first, but there are some tropical areas that have plenty of sunlight but not enough nutrients for ocean plankton to survive.


We know that the growth of phytoplankton populations is dependent on light levels and nutrient availability. here may be one area with bountiful light and no nutrients, or another that is nutrient rich but is not exposed to the sunlight. The weather also influences the development of photoplankton. The other thing that directly affects the amount of photoplankton in an area is the environment. For example, the production of ocean plankton decreases during El Nino weather patterns, and decreases in the arctic ocean under very cold circumstances.

Where to Snorkel or SCUBA in Bermuda


When we picture, or hear the word Bermuda, the first thought frequently is about how it is one of the richest islands in the world. That might be, but what some people don’t know is the attraction of Bermuda is not limited to the land. There are over 200 square miles of coral reef to explore underwater. There are no car rentals so getting around at first might be awkward. But fortunately Bermuda is not that big a place and there are so many places that can be snorkeled at from just about every shore. The boat trips are a popular option as well, but if you want to see the outer reefs–do your homework. Not every company will take you out that far.

There are two shipwrecks, the Constellation and the Montana, where snorkeling is also popular. Both of these are between 15 and 20 feet underwater. This means that they are both easily visible by snorkeling at the surface. The Constellation was going from New York to Venezuela with cement, whiskey and several kinds of drugs. It encountered a storm which caused it to leak. The captain decided to stop in Bermuda for repairs. However, when they got there, everyone was saved but the ship sunk. The Montana was going from London to Wilmington, North Carolina. While trying to navigate the Western Blue Cut Channel, the ship hit the reefs in the water and sank. A lot of the ship has collapsed on itself but the front end and the engines are still intact. Further they have become home to many fish. There are daily trips where both of these shipwrecks can be seen. Also there are a lot more shipwrecks to be seen…many of which can be easily seen at the surface. These just happen to be the most well-known.

 If it is the reef, fish and maybe even an octopus that you want to see while snorkeling in Bermuda, Elbow Beach would be a great spot. However you need to be aware of the wind. It is not a good idea when the wind is strong from the south or east. If you are up for a swim of around 1,500 feet, you can see the Pollockshields shipwreck. This ship was originally a German naval ship but it was captured by the English in New York. There were live shells inside the ship and they are now part of the wreckage. You can see a huge spare propeller and engine parts inside the reef edge. If you are interested in seeing this, you can rent an underwater scooter to help you get out there from Elbow Beach.

Snorkel Park is probably the easiest snorkeling spot to get to if you are there on a cruise ship as it is within walking distance of the docks. There are going to be a lot of broken and damaged corals, a lot of which were done by people, so it is important not to touch anything–even and especially with your fins. The sea life is not as plentiful as other places but the Corky Sea Fingers and Fire Corals are huge here. This along with the fish that can be seen (partially because of the shallowness of the water) and the fact that it is walking distance within the docks make this a worthwhile place to go snorkeling in Bermuda.

What are the Earth Day 2016 Highlights?

earth-day1It is the 46th year and this year it is not just about one rally for awareness. It is about events all over the world that promote conservation of our dear planet. Save the date on April 22 as you must be active in this mission to save the Earth. One of the events is the Planetpalooza at Peoria, Arizona where admission is absolutely free. There will be photo opportunities for kids with economic friendly characters such as Recyclone, Water Woman and the Generator. There will also be live music performed by Sugahbeath, Jeordie and the Hamptons.

There will also be food trucks featuring delicious food including burgers for those who have a heavy appetite and shakes for those who like to have a cold drink to cool off from the heat. There will also be face painting but don’t get too carried away with that or else your eyes might end up getting paint in it and you might temporarily lose your vision. Don’t miss the mini bazaar there as vendors will sell handcrafted jewelry, recycled materials and green products. Be amazed at the electric car show there and you will wonder how in the world it is actually working. The design of the car were made by experts so you know you are going to take a look at good quality.

There is an eco-friendly fashion show where Peoria students used research and creativity in order to recycle old items such as water bottles, clothes and keys. They get turned into something special by way of the brains of the students. The students are so good that you won’t notice all the items the models are wearing are made up of recycle material.

The fashion show not only brought out the creative side of the students but they were also made aware that it is important to conserve in order to save the environment. We live in one planet so we must do everything we can to stay living in it. No Earth Day event would be complete without a little bit of education so the ASU School of Sustainability will educate young people about sustainability. It is something that a lot of people should be informed about and that includes today’s youth since they are all about the future. The cleanup will still happen as expected and it will precede the Planetpalooza festival. At Santa Barbara, they will celebrate Earth Day by having a lot of activities as well. One of them is Curated Cocktails by Chris Burmeister along with a special set by DJ Blasko.

Earth Day’s Beer & Wine Garden is home to some nice food finds as you will get to sample fresh pizzas, green smoothies and other healthy options. Do yourself a favor and eat healthy food. After you eat, don’t forget to throw the waste in the recycle bin. There will be two full days of exciting musical performances by local bands and all bands are invited to perform their hit singles to the crowd.

How Does Ocean Fishing Affect Our Ecosystem?

protecting the ocean

In quite a few fisheries, you often hear a lot of talk regarding the ecosystem effects of fishing. This will include the collateral damage of the bycatch. And it incorporates catastrophic cascades’, whereby fishing down one particular species, there is a cascading effect on the food chain. Probably the most well-known instance of this is the impact caused by the collapse of the Northwest Atlantic cod stocks.

This implies that the actual costs of fishing are far more than that of the costs of marketing and operations, and also it’s very likely that the public is being “over served” on some particular fish species.

The ocean is abundant with delicate life, for example, the congregation of brittle stars, anemones, as well as corals.

In the case of the deep-sea fisheries, particularly those making use of bottom trawl gears, we usually find major ecosystem impacts. Just consider this:

Bottom trawl gear annihilates significant habitat which sustains our ecosystem. This destructive gear – utilized to catch approximately 80% of the deep-sea species – leaves sponge beds and coral gardens devastated. These habitats usually provide many significant ecosystem services to the other species, such as those which are targeted by the deep-sea fishing operations. For example, a recent study found that the trawled areas actually had 15 times less coral and also attracted few rockfish, a significant target species. Ocean fishing generally yields huge quantities of bycatch. For example, one particular study revealed that between 1994 and 1997, an average of about 49 percent of French deepwater fish catches was rejected as undesirable in the Northeast Atlantic. Recently, ICES asserted that bycatch accounts for nearly 32 percent of the catch in weight and 55 percent in the number of the French fleets targeting the roundnose grenadier in the Atlantic.

It is also evident that the bycatch of the deep-sea species is much more ecologically damaging compared to the bycatch of the shallow water species. The majority of deep-sea fish is not able to survive the alterations in pressure since they are generally brought up from the depths and, therefore, fish are rejected dead. Also, the deep-sea fish are customized to the situations of low turbulence plus their skin isn’t covered with mucus, therefore, there is a high mortality among the fish which manage to escape through the trawl meshes.

And finally, the effects of ocean fishing cascade down the food chain into the ocean. When there is a collapse in the population of a particular species, studies recommend that others might also fall along with them. In the case of hagfish, statistics shows that while the commercial fishers went after several populations of hagfish, the stock of the other commercial species began to plummet. It is acknowledged that by ingesting the dead as well as decaying carcasses which have fallen to the benthic area, hagfishes usually produce a rich environment for the other species such as codfish, haddock, as well as flounder.

Recently it was learned that deep-sea trawling off the Ireland coast probably triggered a 72 percent downfall in the abundance of the deep-sea species up to 1,500 meters deep since 1976. Declines in the fish abundance were noted as far as 2,500 meters deep, where trawl nets cannot even reach.

Finally, we realize that the real costs of ocean fishing are far more than what actually appear on the company balance sheets. It’s time we start protecting the ocean and take care that the short-term commercial interests don’t trump those of the remaining parts of the world.

What Kind of Wet Suits are Best for SCUBA?

zone3_men_s_vision_wetsuit_2_When SCUBA diving, one of the most important pieces of equipment needed is the wet suit. However, there seems to be an unending number of options, so it’s critical to know what to look for in a wet suit. Here are some of the most important considerations when choosing one:

  1. Style

There are various issues to consider in terms of a wet suit’s style. Are you interested in a full wet suit, or do you want a “shortie” (short arms and knee-length legs)? Do you want a 2-piece suit or a one piece wet suit that contains long legs and a sleeveless top? Are you interested in the wet suit having a hood or do you want a hoodless suit?

There’s a wide variety of different styles of wet suits. A shortie is ideal for warm-water diving. One X-factory is that your legs and arms will be exposed to the water. Meanwhile, a full SCUBA diving wet suit is one of the most popular and common type of suit. It is a one-piece suit with long arms and long legs. Meanwhile, most people choose a wet suit that doesn’t include a hood when diving in warm waters. However, if you’re going to be diving in colder waters then you arguably should consider choosing a suit with a hood.

  1. Thickness

This is arguably one of the most important factors to consider when selecting a wet suit. Which one is right for your needs? Select a thickness based on the type of diving you’ll be engaging in, as well as the type of water you’ll be SCUBA diving in. These factors re critical, as choosing the “wrong” thickness could provide problems such as the wet suit not being thermal enough, which could then result in various health issues.

  1. Quality

The quality of a wet suit’s construction is another key factor that you should consider when choosing a SCUBA diving wet suit. This is especially true when you’re purchasing a brand new one, and will be going on many dives in the future.

The cheapest type of wet suit is called “glued stitch.” That’s because it contains glued tape that covers the seams. While it’s functional, it will probably wear out faster than all other types.

Another type of stitching used for cheap wet suits is called “over-lock.” It connects the neoprene on the seam by attaching the edges.

A better quality stitching is called “blind stitch.” First the material is glued, then it’s stitched on just one side. However, the stitch doesn’t create a hole in the material, in order to prevent creating a water entry point. Sometimes the stitch is also contained on the reverse side. This helps to bolster the strength of the first blind stitch. The result is the strongest seam possible. However, it’s important to note that this also affects the price of the SCUBA diving wet suit. However, it’s certainly worth considering if you plan to use the suit for a lot of diving in the future.

SCUBA Fitness Level Info

scuba fitness girl

Before you venture into scuba diving, you need to know the fitness level of scuba divers. The sport can be a fun and exciting adventure when you travel beneath the seawaters. However, it can be extra dangerous when you are unprepared and have no knowledge about the sport. As you venture into diving, ensure that you have all the safety measures in mind. You need all these especially if you are a beginner of the sport.

What you need to start the sport is to undergo training. You may like to learn the sport with a seasoned diver that can be your instructor. You can also ask friends who have adequate diving experience for the training. Remember that the sport isn’t a joke and you need to be proficient in order to survive the deep blue seawaters. You can start in a pool to practice your underwater abilities. As you can see, scuba diving is not an easy sport. You need to ensure that you are 100% dedicated to learn the sport before proceeding to the real thing.

Before you are permitted to go on scuba diving, you need to have a certification and permit to dive. You also need to ensure the fitness level of scuba divers when it comes to their health conditions. Ensure that you are physically fit before diving. If you don’t feel well during a dive, never pursue the activity. If you are fatigued, have runny nose, fever or any other sickness, never attempt to venture into the sport. It may result to health hazards which can endanger your life.

Also ensure that you have the right scuba gears to venture into the sport. You must have a scuba mask that allows you to see the underwater world clearly. Ensure that the mask is sealed from water for a safe diving. You must also have scuba fins that allow you to move freely in the seawater, even with the heaviness and awkwardness of the scuba equipment.  Also ensure that all other gears are ready before you venture into the scuba diving.

When diving, expect that the water can get colder as you go deeper. Be ready by wearing protection suits as what many divers do. Unlike before, these suits are lighter and more comfortable to wear. For warm tropical waters, a short wetsuit can provide the right thermal protection. For a cooler water, perhaps a full length wetsuit may be required. Note that when you are properly dressed, you can enjoy more the scuba diving experience

The good thing about scuba diving is learning the adventure experience regardless of age. You can learn to dive for as long as you have the fitness level of scuba divers. You can start learning when you’re age 12 up untill retirement age. Just ensure that you have a great health condition to pursue the sport. Also ensure that you are not a claustrophobic. You are adventuring an open sea and its underwater world so ensure you are confident in traveling around.

Knowing What Is a PADI Instructor Course


When you want to be a professional diving instructor, you are required with more than just an extensive diving experience. Let us know what is a PADI and why need to undergo extensive training and take PADI courses to become an efficient dive instructor. These courses will allow you to teach diving with students and produce future generations of highly skillful and trained divers.

There are many schools that provide PADI Instructor Development Course programs. The course itself provides two types of diving course programs that usually run between six to twelve months of commercial and recreational diving courses. While commercial diving courses are most suited for those who want to turn it as a career; recreational diving courses are for those who want to venture the ocean and turn it as a leisure and adventure.

PADI instructor courses are very beneficial to aspirants of becoming professional divers. It is a chance to explore on what’s beyond this diving experience. As an instructor, you get to share the talent of diving with others. Aside from taking PADI instructor course, you can also work as a media diver, tourism diver, marine science diver, and tourism diver. All of these are fun and rewarding professions.

The best part of what is a PADI instructor course program is whether you have or haven’t any diving experience. You can avail the program anytime when you feel like wanting to expand your diving experience. The course program will include theories and practical training. For the theoretical courses, this will include basic safety measures, appropriate hand signals, and body language signs used underwater. These courses are necessary when you start to train students for their first attempts underwater. You also introduce standard operating procedures while they take up these courses. They will also learn about the different diving gears and equipment.

Practical courses on the other hand allows you to apply what you have learned from theoretical courses. As you take these courses, you will have to learn real-life scuba diving. You are required to dive in a swimming pool before you go diving into the real thing. You will be accompanied by a certified diver who will readily evaluate your performance and check if you are ready to dive on your own with no assistance. They help you prepare for the real challenge which is to dive in an open sea.

To learn what is a PADI course requires diligence, sincerity and commitment. You have to be serious in the real sense. In the end, you become a successful diver or a scuba instructor. There is often a huge career waiting for you once you finish the course. After completing the PADI course, you are provided with a certificate. It should prove that you have undergone the training and are now ready for scuba diving. This can be an exciting and unforgettable glimpse, especially when you venture into the underwater world that only few people read about in books or see in movies.