Wednesday, January 21, 2009

My most comforting place.

I would have to agree with Vicky, the Ocean is definitely the most comforting place for me. I wouldn't be a marine biologist if it wasn't the Ocean! My partner Diego is also in oceanography so we share our fascination with the Ocean. We both love to go beachcombing, having BBQs on the beach, watching sunsets/sunrises and camping.

Those are our blue tents behind the bush...camping with Diego's sister and her husband on a deserted beach in Mexico.

Just us and the egret enjoying the sunset on our deserted beach in Mexico.

However, the best part for both of us is actually being in the Ocean!

Here we are snorkeling in Mexico this past Christmas!

It is such a different world under the surface, the ambient colour and temperature is different depending where you are and the time of year but most important, it is completely different from the conditions above the water!

Here I am on the left in Mexico, look at the brilliant blue of the water and note that my head is not covered! I am also wearing a 4 mm wetsuit (which means it lets a small amount of water between the skin and your suit that you warm up and it stays there).The centre photo was taken while working in Prince Edward Island in the summer of 2007. Here the water is really murky and kinda brown! Here my suit is a 7 mm drysuit (which means no water goes into the suit) and I am wearing merino wool pants and long sleeve top underneath. However, it was warm enough to go gloveless! The last photo was taken in Nova Scotia during my Masters in May 2005. The water is a blueish-green but very cold...maybe 4 degrees Celsius. I am again wearing my drysuit, but this time I am definitely wearing gloves and at least 3 layers of wool and fleece underneath!

I love the feeling that you are floating and can no longer feel the strong pull of gravity.

Sometimes the water can be so clear it feels like you are in a zero gravity world! But of course here in Nova Scotia clear water usually means really cold water!!!

The variety of life is astonishing! In the tropics, the waters are dominated by sand with islands of corals and sponges. These are likened to oases in a desert and are where much of the life aggregates.
A mixed schoal of fish, surrounding a mostly dead coral head.

A moray eel living in a hole in a coral and sponge reef.

But in more northern latitudes you get a predominance of large seaweeds that form huge beds full of life!
Beautiful frilly kelp plants on a boulder with a ground cover of a large branched green algae called Codium and a mixed yellowy turf in Nova Scotia.

A close up of the turf and our favorit friend the American Lobster!

Not to mention the sounds...or lack thereof in Nova Scotian waters (except for thos pesky power boats) and the loud crackling of the coral reef in the Caribbean.

To me the underwater world is my place of comfort! I always dreamed of being a mermaid or dolphin as a kid. I guess a Marine Biologist is the next best thing!!!


  1. That's awesome - I love that you have a completely different perspective on the ocean than the average Joe (ie me)! Beautiful!

  2. What stunning picture!!!!! I so wish I was close to an ocean, but for us the lake will have to do!

  3. Amazing shots! Thanks for sharing. :)

  4. Wow, your pictures are breathtaking. Thanks for sharing this world of beauty few of us get to see. Barb

  5. Ditto what everyone else said about your photos! Since I can't swim, I enjoy the oceans vicariously through other people's photos and cinematography. :)

  6. Those are amazing pictures! I wish we were closer to the ocean. My husband visited his best friend in Santa Barbara this fall and fell in love! Maybe someday we'll actually get there =)