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Technical Spearfishing Technical Scuba diving is generally defined as going deeper than 130 feet. You must have the proper training for this extreme aspect of spearfishing.

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Old 06-17-2007, 11:23 PM   #1
SpearMax
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Exclamation Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

I've been hunting one of my favorite technical areas recently and observed this strange algea that seem to be expanding. The first image is about three months ago. The next images are from Sunday June 17, 2007 when I noticed these octagon shaped patches in the algae.
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Old 06-17-2007, 11:27 PM   #2
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Lightbulb Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

The collection point was at 207 feet as can be seen on my Cochran computer. The samples were from the main algea and the bright spots.
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Old 06-17-2007, 11:30 PM   #3
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Question Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

I gave the samples to my friend Scott Hurley who works at Force E Dive shop on Sundays and Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute during the week. He will have it analyzed and let us know what it is. His initial thought is that the bright spots are where the starfish have been eating the algea. I am curious to verify what kind of deep water algea it is. Maybe there is some sort of pollution from a previously unknown break in the fresh water aquifer under the sea bed or something like that or it could just be a naturally ocurring phenomenon.
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"Spearing is the path to enlightenment." --- Lao Tzu

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Old 06-18-2007, 12:01 AM   #4
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Thumbs up Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Oh...here is a stone shot I did on Saturday at 230 feet that resulted in that old familiar spinning tumble.
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"Spearing is the path to enlightenment." --- Lao Tzu

“Live this day as if it will be your last. Remember that you will only find 'tomorrow' on the calendars of fools.”

---- Success Unlimited Author Og Mandino b.1923 - d.1996

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Old 06-18-2007, 12:05 AM   #5
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Thumbs down Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

I strung the fish up with a spike and leader attached to a lift bag. I did not send the lift bag up right away because a big sportfishing boat was directly above me.

And in a stoke of brilliance (or was it narcosis) I took off with the lift bag, but left the fish on the bottom!

I had detached the monofilament leader from the lift bag.
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"Spearing is the path to enlightenment." --- Lao Tzu

“Live this day as if it will be your last. Remember that you will only find 'tomorrow' on the calendars of fools.”

---- Success Unlimited Author Og Mandino b.1923 - d.1996

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Old 06-18-2007, 08:32 AM   #6
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Angry Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

I realized my mistake in about thirty seconds and immediately returned. But, the dead fish had vanished!

Guess what....I have been planning on getting TriMix certified in the next few weeks. Maybe the timing is good.
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Old 06-18-2007, 08:45 AM   #7
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Great report. Sounds like a lot of fun. Sorry you lost the fish, but it's not that bad if the worst thing that happens to you while doing a difficult dive like that is loosing a fish. I am sure you will get plenty more.
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Old 06-18-2007, 09:15 AM   #8
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

nice pics of the fish....funny story with it.

as for that algae....its weird...

in the bag it looks like any other red algae (Rhodophyta)...or maybe brown (Phaeophyta).

will be interested to see what your friend comes up with.


i will say this. i've done dives in deep water (albeit not 200ft) off the keys and seen several times HUGE blooms of filimentous red/brown algae on the reef. some of it so thick you can't see the rock or sand. it seems to be somewhat seasonal...probably temp and nutrient related. since it disperses later in the year.

could just be a timing thing, upwelling or something.
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Old 06-18-2007, 09:55 AM   #9
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Smile Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Quote:
Originally Posted by keezdiver
it seems to be somewhat seasonal...probably temp and nutrient related. since it disperses later in the year. could just be a timing thing, upwelling or something.
Jeff, it has been accumulating for quite some time now. I wiould have to check my videos, but I'm thinking 8-12 months at least. We will have to see what this summer's cold-waterupwellings do, but I am thinking it is fed by fertilized nutrients from the aquifer. We will have to see what Brian LaPointe at HBOI says as he is our resident expert along with his colleages. Tony
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---- Success Unlimited Author Og Mandino b.1923 - d.1996
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Old 06-18-2007, 09:58 AM   #10
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Quote:
Originally Posted by keezdiver
......it seems to be somewhat seasonal...probably temp and nutrient related. since it disperses later in the year.
could just be a timing thing, upwelling or something.
That's what I was wondering. Tony did you hit any thermo's down there? The 80-90 ft reefs were running 78-79 degrees over the weekend. We saw some of the algae late last year when the waters got cold, but haven't seen it on the shallow reefs yet.
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Old 06-18-2007, 01:30 PM   #11
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnoly
That's what I was wondering. Tony did you hit any thermo's down there? The 80-90 ft reefs were running 78-79 degrees over the weekend. We saw some of the algae late last year when the waters got cold, but haven't seen it on the shallow reefs yet.
John, sometimes there are thermos down there. For example, last weekend was 72 degrees below 150 feet. This weekend, there was little difference throughout the water column. Tony
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Old 06-18-2007, 01:37 PM   #12
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Similar algae bloomed in about '73-'74.

Sea Hares and fighting conch bloomed right afterward and the algae disappeared. The two events may even be related..


BTW there amy be an octopus or eel in the thruster... that would explain the rapid departure of the fish.
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Old 06-18-2007, 02:45 PM   #13
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Question Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

Quote:
Originally Posted by FredT
Similar algae bloomed in about '73-'74.
Where did that happen?
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Old 06-18-2007, 03:10 PM   #14
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

I doubt it has anything to do with your aquifer theory. The aquifer system in our area does not work that way. It is actually opposite of what you are thinking. Which is one problem with the drought. As more fresh water is drawn from the groundwater and as the groundwater table lowers it causes the saltwater to creep west into the freshwater drinking supply (saltwater intrusion).
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Old 06-18-2007, 05:47 PM   #15
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Re: Deep Chit! - Strange Algae at 210 feet

The problem is nutrient rich water that is deep well injected by the coastal municipalities at a depth of 3000 ft. This aquifer is separated by clay confining layers from the aquifer that we draw our drinking water from. We believe that these clay confining layers breakdown offshore and provide a supply of nutrients to these deeper reefs.
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