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Field Notes

Covering the natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest

October 5, 2012 at 7:00 AM

A world of color and life beneath the surface of the sea

The environmental group Oceana has produced a new film narrated by Alexandra Cousteau, the granddaughter of the great undersea naturalist, Jacques Cousteau.

A senior adviser to Oceana, Cousteau said she learned to dive in the Mediterranean from her grandfather when she was about 7 years old — in places that today look nothing like they did then, in terms of the abundance of sea life.

Her grandfather was the first to bring to the general public the world beneath the surface of the sea. She hopes that by bringing images of the sea floor to the surface, people will care about the delicate lives carrying on at depth.

“Hopefully awareness leads to sensitivity, to help people make different choices and understand the connectivity between species, which is key,” she said by phone from Washington, D.C.

The new film explores that connectivity between orca whales and the food chain that supports them … all the way to the bottom of the sea.

Still photographs taken along with the film show the colorful life on the sea floor of the San Juan Islands.

anenome.jpg

An anenome on the sea floor of the San Juan Islands. Who knew such colorful life reposes at depth?

Photo courtesy of Oceana

crab.jpg

A crab picks its way across the sea floor in the San Juan Islands.

Photo courtesy, Oceana

underwater plants.jpg

The delicacy of sea floor life belies the tough conditions at depth in the San Juan Islands.

Photo courtesy, Oceana

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