X-Ray Mag #96

Feature articles in this issue with stand-alone pdfs

Peter Symes   Peter Symes , Wolfgang Riess
C130 Hercules aircraft, Aqaba, Jordan. Photo by Wolfgang Riess.

My relationship to the Middle East is like a long-running but complicated love affair. I keep being attracted to it and keep coming back. Each time I step out of the airplane when I arrive there, I am embraced by a pleasant, complex, and—dare I say—almost sensual scent so full of notes, most of which I have never been able to identify. There seems to be a whiff of charcoal and smoke from shisha (the molasses-based tobacco concoction smoked in a hookah) mixed in with scents of spices, flowers, trees and the sun-baked sand. It is a very characteristic compound smell, which I find pleasant. Also, people are just nice and welcoming.

Susanne Paulsen   Susanne Paulsen

Boil pasta al dente with some blue mussels, white wine and olive oil, or put some king scallops on the barbecue with fresh herbs and pesto. Add one part Italian passion, one part fresh mozzarella and two parts delightful diving, and you have a culinary adventure!

Mike Ange  

Exposure protection is second only to the dive mask in its importance to your dive experience. In my article in issue #92, we looked at wetsuits, their myths and design features. In this follow-up, we will discuss the next level corollary—drysuits.

Christian Skauge   Christian Skauge

Gran Canaria is one of the most visited destinations in Europe, but far too many leave their dive gear at home! You should definitely bring it, because the island offers great diving with huge schools of fish, angelsharks, stingrays and great volcanic seascapes.

Maria Fotiadi, Erikos Kranidiotis and Stelios Stamatakis   Trifonas Egglezos, Maria Fotiadi , and Erikos Kranidiotis

In May 2019, a group of dry cavers visited the famous silver mines of Lavrion in the southeastern area of Attica, Greece. The main objective of the visit was to inspect and document the flooded chambers.

Edited by G. Symes   Kelly Quinn
Kaleidoscope, 30 x 40 inches, acrylic on canvas by Kelly Quinn

American artist and educator Kelly Quinn creates vivid, dynamic paintings of marine life and reefs with brilliant color in detailed compositions. She is currently the artist-in-residence at The Florida Aquarium in Tampa, where she gives younger generations insights into the planet’s fragile marine ecosystems. X-Ray Mag interviewed the artist to find out more about her artwork and her mission to connect audiences to conservation through the power of art.

Lucy Martin   Sam Balderson, Christian Burger, Tony Jupiter, , Lucy Martin, Rose Martin, Brandi Mueller , Sharon Ralsph anc ICS
Saving the reefs in Seychelles

Drifting fish aggregating devices (dFADs) are threatening endangered marine species and coral reefs in the Indian Ocean. Marine conservationist Lucy Martin worked with the Island Conservation Society (ICS), a non-governmental organization in the Seychelles, on a large survey in 2015 to find out how big an issue FADs actually were. The instruments littered the marine environment in the Outer Islands especially around Desroches, Poivre, Saint Joseph, Cosmolédo, Farquhar and the Alphonse Group, where Martin lived. As a trained marine biologist, she took a scientific approach to the survey and spent time in the water to see the damage for herself.

Simon Pridmore  

It was a beautiful day in Indonesia’s Banda Sea. Richard rolled back into the warm waters and swam over to join his wife, Florence. After exchanging signals, they descended together, heading for a patch of bright yellow sea fans on the reef wall at 30m, where their guide had promised to show them pygmy seahorses. The guide was already there below, searching for the elusive little creatures. But, as Richard gradually went deeper, he began to find it harder to breathe and he was soon having to expend significant effort to suck air from his regulator.

Claudia Weber-Gebert   Claudia Weber-Gebert

This natural spectacle takes place almost every year on the eastern coasts of South Africa and Mozambique—the so-called “Sardine Run.” To this day, the reason why it occurs cannot be precisely defined. There are various scientific theories, but some of them contradict each other. Factors involved in this, the world’s largest migration of South African sardines (Sardinops ocellatus), include the two major ocean currents—the Agulhas and the Benguela—plus wind speed and rain as well as air and water temperatures.

Lawson Wood   Lawson Wood

I first visited the Red Sea as part of a marine biological expedition with Dr Paul Cragg back in 1973. After having run safaris out of Israel and ending up living there for several years working on the legendary liveaboard dive boats Lady Jenny III and Lady Jenny V, my love for the Red Sea has never diminished. Now, some 45 years later, a return trip to the Red Sea was increasing my heartbeat in anticipation.

Anatoly Beloshchin   Anatoly Beloshchin
Swimming Pools and Underwater Photography

It used to be that when one talked about underwater photography, one primarily meant photographing sea animals in their natural surroundings; however, it can also be interesting to shoot underwater images in swimming pools. Firstly, a pool can be turned into an underwater photo studio. Secondly, there are pools that are unique in themselves. I present some examples in this article.


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