Friday, February 24, 2012

Scuba Diving - Nighttime on the Reef

I must admit I've not been much of a fan of night dives in the past. But with the proper light, enthusiastic night dive buddies, and some knowledge of what's going on out there, you can really see some amazing fish behavior and nocturnal critters.

The main difference between daytime and nocturnal migrations of schooling fish is their destination. Fish that feed during the day follow pathways over the reef or near the edge, never risking open water. Small plankton-feeding fish such as blue chromis usually stay within easy reach of coral, although they feed in the water column. Nighttime migrations are made up of fish that move out and away from the reef's protection, either to feed in the sand or grass flats or on plankton in the darkness of the open water. Some schools break up into small groups and forage a short distance from the reef. Others move as far away as a mile or so. Predators are not as great a threat to these exposed reef fish at night, although some of the smaller bottom-feeding fish sometimes fall prey to a lurking nocturnal scorpionfish or stingray.

The majority of night fish are carnivores, out for a meal. The available food is different at night - just as there is a nocturnal population of fish, there are nocturnal varieties of invertebrates. Even the plankton changes. Small shrimps and crabs that live in the sandy bottom during the day migrate upward at night to feed on plankton, becoming fair game for the night fish. Other crustaceans, together with worms, starfish, mollusks, and a host of other invertebrates emerge from their hiding places to scour the sea floor for food. The tiny ones are a meal for squirrelfish and cardinalfish; the larger ones fall prey to stingrays and larger predators. The squirrelfish family is well adapted for nocturnal living. Their reddish color makes them almost invisible in the darkness and their huge eyes give them excellent night vision.

Many species of the snapper family are primarily nocturnal, dispersing from the reef area at night to eat crustaceans and small fish. The yellowtail snapper, a boldly curious, opportunistic feeder seems to be active around the clock.

Eels are at home in the nocturnal world, and morays are often seen free-swimming along the reef during a night dive. Bright moonlight apparently affects fish behavior. A triggerfish scours a sandy bottom, excavating invertebrates from the sand while hovering head down and blowing streams of water downward. Dark nights find it asleep in a crevice, but if there is enough moonlight, it goes out to get a midnight snack.

Many corals feed at night and divers can lure light-sensitive plankton into the extended coral polyps with a dive light trained on one coralhead and watch the feeding process. In the water column your light will pick up the odd shapes of small jellyfish, microscopic plankton, and tiny self-propelled organisms twisting and pulsating in the light. Turn the light off and see the bioluminescent animals shining with their chemically generated light, trailing behind your sweeping arm movement.

Basket stars unfold and nocturnal crinoids, having crawled out from their daytime crevices, feed by extending their arms into the current. Sea urchins emerge from their holes and march about the reef borders, grazing on algae and creating bare pathways as they go. Brittle stars and small shrimp and crabs are often seen, as are bristleworms out eating coral polyps or munching on anemones. This is the time to look for active octopuses, lobster, giant crabs, and large annelid worms. Hermit crabs are usually everywhere, scavenging the reef in their clumsy, borrowed shells.

About an hour before dawn, a reversal of the evening transition begins. Schools of foraging goatfish, snappers, grunts, sweepers, squirrelfish, and drums reassemble from the sandy and rock bottom surrounding the reef and prepare to make their mass transit back to daytime resting valleys and crevices. Plankton eaters, some in groups and some one by one, scurry back to bed in coral recesses as the night sleepers awaken.

Samet Bilir writes about technology trends, digital camera reviews, and photography, such as DSLR camera bags 2012 and Nikon P7100. To read more articles from him visit his website at chi-photography.com.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sports Carnival Ecstasy - February 23, 2012

Jeremy LinImage via Wikipedia

Welcome to the February 23, 2012 edition of Sports Carnival Ecstasy.In this edition we have an article by Eva Ardenav on the 25 Most Memorable Moments in Pro Sports History. Lisa Hood takes a look at 10 Reasons Non-Sports Fans Should Care About Jeremy Lin. We continue with our Linsanity with an post on 5 Ways to be Linspired by Linsanity by Charles Chua C K. And finally Bill Smith interviews David Perkins who Fell in Love with Ohio State during the high school recruiting process. Hope you enjoy the material, bookmark, share, tweet, like on Facebook, and come back next time.

Eva Ardenav presents 25 Most Memorable Moments in Pro Sports History : Ninth Inning Blog posted at Masters in Sports Management.

Lisa Hood presents 10 Reasons Non-Sports Fans Should Care About Jeremy Lin posted at ZenCollegeLife, saying, "The 23-year-old phenom is breaking records and providing a fresh face, and much needed positive press, to the NBA."

basketball

wizard presents Training Your Tendons: The Best Way For an Athlete to Prevent Injuries posted at Wizard Corpse.

Evan Hoon presents The Sports World Through a Teenager's Eyes posted at The Sports World Through a Teenager's Eyes.

Joe Issid presents Top 10 Athlete Names for the Pun Hungry posted at Joe Issid.

Joe Issid presents What’s in a Name? The Perfect Jeremy Lin Storm posted at Joe Issid.

Charles Chua C K presents 5 Ways to be Linspired by Linsanity posted at All About Living with Life.

football

Bill Smith presents 2012 Linebacker Camren Williams Switch from Penn State to Ohio State posted at BrutusReport, saying, "Recruiting analysts heard about a mid December visit of 2012 Catholic Memorial linebacker Camren Williams as he was arriving in Columbus with his family on December 12th."

Bill Smith presents Joey O’Connor Completes the 2012 Ohio State Offensive Line Class posted at BrutusReport, saying, "Ohio State Buckeye recruiting has picked up with the approaching 2012 National Letter of Intent Signing Day right around the corner in early February."

Bill Smith presents Defensive Highlights of 2012 CB Armani Reeves posted at eScoutRoom, saying, "In this highlight film of 2012 DB Armani Reeves, we get to see the Ohio State commit’s skills playing cornerback, kick return defensive and kick return."

Bill Smith presents Camren Williams Catholic Memorial HS West Roxbury MA posted at eScoutRoom, saying, "This Camren Williams highlight film from 247SportsStudio is pretty much the same video material from BlueCarolina.com but shows how Williams can clog up space in the middle not allowing running backs any room to get up field."

Bill Smith presents David Perkins Fell in Love with Ohio State posted at eScoutRoom, saying, "Ohio State had a major recruiting weekend in the middle of January which focused on a position of need for 2012, linebackers."

wizard presents easy training and growing muscle | Wizard Corpse posted at wizard corpse, saying, "Muscle development aids in Athleticperformance, lern how to improve yours"

Sameer Thakur presents webloggged: David Beckham : The dumbest man ever born. posted at webloggged.

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of sports carnival ecstasy using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

3 Hardest Road Cycling Events in the World

Français : TOUR DE FRANCE 1993Image via Wikipedia

Professional cycling events are plentiful worldwide but which three are the hardest to race in and complete? The Grand Tours would have to place at the top of the list taking into account all factors such as distance, number and skill of competitors, the difficulty of the track and of course the history of crashes at the event! Every year there are three such tours held in France, Spain, and Italy that take the cake for the hardest races in the world and attract the world's top athletes who put their bodies on the line for the ultimate in glory and success.

Pro cyclists begin their race season earlier than one might expect. Between the months of January and October professional bikers travel the world engaging in all types of racing from simple road races to triathlons and indoor time trials. In the middle of such a hectic schedule are the three Grand Tour races.

The Giro d'Italia

Beginning with the Tour of Italy, or the Giro d’Italia, cyclists race 2,159 miles through the low lands and mountainous regions of Italy. The race lasts three weeks and is as exhausting as it is beautiful. It begins in the month of May and attracts some of the best competitors in the world with its extreme challenge and tough course.

Tour de France

The second Grand tour is the well known Tour of France. This race gathers the most high-profile bikers. It has twenty stages and covers 2,235 miles of terrain.

All sorts of weather conditions exist and bikers are never sure what will happen when curves are taken at such high speeds. Sadly in 2011 bicyclist Wouter Waylandt lost his life on such a curve testifying to the danger to each biker as they ride in one of the world's toughest races.

The Tour of Spain

The last of the Grand Tours is Spain’s, Vuelta a Espana. It is raced during the month of August. Again it is a race lasting three weeks and covers 2,050 miles.

Other tour races, such as the Tour of Australia are held and have their own share of challenges. Take the Manayunk Wall in Philadelphia, PA, it is infamous for the 17 percent climb that is torture to both amatuer and pro cyclists alike. That being said, the Grand Tour races are still in a league of their own and are the hardest road cycling events that competitors will ride in their lifetime. They're certainly one for the bucket list and if you're a competitive cyclist, something you must have a go at, if you're prepared to take the risk!

Martin is a road bikes enthusiast, having cycled in many amatuer races, building himself up to one day compete in the grand tours. If you haven't yet seen one of these races first-hand, he recommends you jump on a plane and book yourself some accommodation, as you'll be in for one of the most exhilirating sports experiences that can only be experienced by watching from the side of the road.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Sports Carnival Ecstasy - February 15, 2012

Česky: Franklin Roberto Lashley. English: Lash...Image via Wikipedia

Welcome to the February 15, 2012 edition of Sports Carnival Ecstasy.In this edition we start with Tom Hofmann who looks over the situation between Lebron and Perkins. Jonny has 10 of the Most Dangerous Sports. Was Super Bowl XLVI was Awesome? Hampi Express thinks so. And finally Eric Gargiulo reports that Bobby Lashley is In Talks To Fight Fedor Emelianenko. Hope you enjoy the articles, bookmark, share, tweet, like on Facebook and come back soon.

Evan Hoon presents The Sports World Through a Teenager's Eyes posted at The Sports World Through a Teenager's Eyes.


basketball

LivingInVol presents Positive and negative autocorrelation athletes - LBJ is a little bitch posted at Living in volatility, saying, "A nerdy post on how Lebron James is a positive autocorrelation player, while Dwyane Wade and others are negative autocorrelation players."

Tom Hofmann presents PERK VS. LEBUM posted at followmylead13, saying, "Something I put together over the situation between Lebron and Perkins."

extreme

Jonny presents 10 of the Most Dangerous Sports posted at Smart blog, saying, "In this post I decided to put a list together of 10 of the most dangerous sports, and the reasons why.
I wish you all the best for the future."

football

Eric Gargiulo presents NFL Super Bowl XLVI Predictions & Preview – Inside The Wheelhouse posted at CamelCluchBlog.Com, saying, "The final game of the 2011-2012 NFL season is finally upon us as Super Bowl 46 is finally here. The two teams, the NFC Champion New York Football Giants and the AFC Champion New England Patriots meet again for the 2nd time in 5 years."

Hampi Express presents Super Bowl XLVI was Awesome posted at Pro Backspin, saying, "Super bowl XKVI review"

golf

Hampi Express presents Taylormade Hired 8 Year Olds in Their Marketing Department posted at Pro Backspin, saying, "Funny and enlightening"

Hampi Express presents He's Baaaack posted at Pro Backspin, saying, "Funny and enlightening"

Hampi Express presents The End of an Era posted at Pro Backspin, saying, "Equipment reviews"

hockey

Tom presents Worst Possible Sport posted at followmylead13, saying, "First blog ever, feedback is appreciated."

mma

Eric Gargiulo presents Bobby Lashley In Talks To Fight Fedor Emelianenko posted at CamelCluchBlog.Com, saying, "Former WWE star Bobby Lashley is reportedly in talks to fight The Last Emperor, Fedor Emelianenko. This would undoubtedly be the biggest test for the former wrestle-maniac turned MMA fighter since making his debut in 2008."

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of sports carnival ecstasy using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

What is Gig Rowing and Who is it For?

gig practice and dogs playinggig practice and dogs playing (Photo credit: grakki)

Gig rowing is a traditional Cornish sport that has taken the boating world by storm in recent years. Its roots lie in the late 18th century when gigs were used as work boats. Incoming ships to harbour needed a pilot to guide them through treacherous waters and teams would race to the ships to deliver their pilot first and get paid. Side jobs included salvaging goods from wrecked ships and they were known to row the English Channel, smuggling goods from France and outrunning duty officers.

Modern Day Gig Rowing
Though gigs are no longer used for work, little else has changed. Teams comprising six rowers and a cox compete in races over 1-2 miles of choppy coastal water. Most popular on Britain's South-West coast, gig racing has seen a global expansion since the 90s with clubs in France, The Netherlands, Australia and the USA. Many events and regattas are held during the Spring racing season, culminating in the World Championships. Held over four days on the Isles of Scilly, the population here doubles as 2000 rowers and spectators descend onto the islands. In the 2011 competition over 200 teams competed in Mens, Ladies and Veterans classes with rowers aged 16 to 80. International teams gave a strong showing, with a Dutch team finishing runners up in the ladies event. Gigs can be seen at inland races too, such as London's Great River Race.

Specifications
Boats measure 32 feet long an 4'10 wide. Built by hand out of Cornish elm as they have been for 200 years, they are rigorously inspected at several points in their construction by the Cornish Pilot Gig Association. The recent popularity of the sport has kept the traditional gig building alive and well in Cornwall, where a new boat will set you back around £25,000. Though a fair outlay, the quality of build ensures their seaworthiness for many years to come. All boats conform to the specifications of Treffry, one of the oldest functioning gigs in existence having been built in 1838. It is owned by the Newquay club along with two others named Newquay (1812) and Dove (1820). These three have a special race of their own with the top club rowers competing fiercely for the pride of crewing them.

Many coastal towns in the South West will have clubs, with larger cities farther afield competing too. Clubs are looking for members of all ages and their long histories promote a strong esprit de corps unique to this sport. If it's not there already, gig rowing will be soon coming to a coastline near you.

Crew Clothing sponsor gig rowing teams and are trying to get more people involved in the sport of rowing. For more information, click here.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Bass Fishing Lake Buchanan – How to Have the Ultimate Experience

English: Largemouth Bass FishingImage via Wikipedia

The reigning champion of rendering incredible trophy bass amid the Highland Lakes is by far Lake Buchanan. Lovingly dubbed by locals as Big Buck, anglers that know the region and are familiar with the lake’s geographic layout have the best luck landing trophy bass. Locals also have the skinny on which lures and rigs reel in fish faster than competitors in a NASCAR event, and they know exactly when and where to hit the lake to have the best success. However, friendly locals who frequent this beautiful lake are always willing to provide visitors with some tips, and this compilation of their expert advice explores how to land some of the state’s most sought after bass species including largemouth, white, and stripers.

The Terrain

True to a highland-type lake, Big Buck boasts numerous rock piles, ledges, and rocky banks. Several creeks and rivers converge with this 22,000 plus acre, man-made dam, and cedar-tree fish attractions grace key spots that include humps, roadbeds, and drop offs. Because the water levels fluctuate heavily throughout the year, the outdoor enthusiasts employed by Texas Parks and Wildlife oversee these created covers and structures to foster angler’s success year round on the lake. Even during times of drought, many species can be landed from the shoreline or from a small canoe – however, fishing here is most fruitful when undertaken within a GPS equipped boat.

Showing Largemouth Bass Who’s Boss

Snaring this sought after species is easiest during the spring and fall, when the staining that occurs near the northern shores of the lake all the way from Beaver Creek to the Colorado River keeps largemouth running shallow regardless of water temperatures. This natural occurrence makes the lower regions of the reservoir a clear-water haven for anglers seeking bass. Use top water lures and leaf spinners in this area, or consider running medium crank bait shallow near the rocky banks. Flipping and pitching under boat docks can prove fruitful, and trial and error can be quite revealing. Having a boat when the waters are elevated can be an advantage, as many of the best local yarns recall days running a jig deep at a slow troll.

Outwitting White Bass and Striper

These species begin spawning in February during their annual run up the Colorado River. Keen anglers concentrate on the area where Beaver Creek meets the Colorado in the early season. However, as with the largemouth bass, the stripers and whites become plentiful and more feasible concerning top fishing catches each spring and fall. One of the most productive lures for stripers includes the Carolina rig set with live shad and run close to the lake’s floor near the drop-offs and humps. White bass often frequent these areas, too, but they respond best to twister tail jigs, small crank baits, minnows, small-hair jigs, and top water lures. Keep and eye out for any flocks of birds appearing to work schools of shad, which indicates that white bass and stripers may have them on the run just beneath the surface.

Surprisingly, one can have a successful bass fishing experience most any time of year here, as these fish can be targeting even during times of extreme heat using downriggers, especially when backed by white or yellow bucktail jigs set around 20-30 feet. Expect summertime expeditions to also lead to health catches of sunfish, crappie, and sizable catfish. As the largest freshwater body amid the Highland Lakes, count on Lake Buchannan to be a worthwhile venture that is a “must-do” for any avid angler planning to visit the region, regardless of the time of year.

Lynn is a novice fisherman whose first fishing excursion took place at the Highland Lakes, an area she enjoys writing about and promoting to visitors.

An Introduction to Scuba Diving

Scuba DivingScuba Diving (Photo credit: John Kotsifas)

The idea that people could breathe underwater was once a fantasy. But today, diving has left the realms of imagination and grown into a worldwide sport with millions of followers. Those who take part in it are granted privileged access to a mysterious yet beautiful world, and every dive is an adventure into the unknown.

Since prehistoric times, people have been drawn to explore the incredible world that lies underwater, whether in pursuit of food or lost riches or from sheer inquisitiveness. There is evidence, for example, that people were holding their breath and diving for shellfish by about 3,000 BC.

Recent Improvements

Despite this long relationship with the undersea world, the human body is not designed to remain underwater for prolonged periods of time. Only comparatively recently, with the development of rudimentary diving bells and helmets from the Middle Ages onward, did it become possible to stay submerged for longer than a single breath allows. During the 18th and 19th centuries, there were remarkable advances in diving technology, such as full diving suits supplied by air pumped from the surface. These advances, which were often spurred on by the lucrative rewards of salvage work, extended dive times and gave access to ever greater depths.

The invention of Aqua Lung in the mid-20th century permitted divers to explore the depths of the world's oceans freely for the first time. This truly remarkable apparatus enabled people to take their own air supply with them when they dive, eliminating the need to be connected to the surface by an airline. The system that evolved from it—scuba—is today widely used in recreational and professional diving.

Global Appeal

As scuba technology became better, diving opened up to the general public. What was once the realm of experts and professionals gradually became a sport with global appeal. Even in countries without a coastline, you will find divers who spend time underwater at inland sites, such as lakes and rivers, or who travel abroad to experience the beauty of the oceans. Once you are qualified, you can dive virtually anywhere in the world. Language is no barrier underwater, since divers use standard hand signals that are understood internationally.

It is hard to tell how many divers there are in the world today, but well over a million people qualify each year. Since its inception in 1966, over 13 million divers around the world have been certified by PADI (the Professional Association of Diving Instructors), and PADI is just one of many training agencies. Diving is one of the fastest-growing hobbies in the world today.

Laura Ginn is a writer and editor for Extreme Sports X, an extreme sports magazine that is updated daily with the latest news, reviews and feature length extreme sports articles.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Why Does Scotland Hate Donald Trump?

Golf Green IslandImage by jurvetson via Flickr

You may have heard if you are in the golfing community, from Scotland or follow the life and business dealings of Mr Donald John Trump Sr. about the golf resort he is building in Scotland. It’s going to be a huge (500 hectares) addition to the Aberdeenshire coastline and will consist of two 18-hole golf courses, tons of luxury holiday homes, a big hotel and a village.

This addition will bring new jobs to the local area, a boost to the tourism income and will be a new addition to Scotland’s many world class golf courses. So why is everyone so upset?

Like a Bulldozer

The main problem people have with the whole thing is just how Trump has gone about it, and how politicians, police and the media have bent rules and seemingly rolled over for the corporate golfing brand juggernaut to plough ahead and get what he wants.

One of the most annoying things for the local people is that the area of land on which the development is due to be constructed is supposed to be protected. It is an official Sight of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), and has been dubbed ‘Scotland’s Rainforest’ because it has taken thousands of years for it to develop its unique ecosystem and rare flora and fauna. This will all be compromised because the Scottish Government even turned over its own environmental laws to let Trump get what he wants.

What Jobs?

Another thing that has angered local residents is the fact that when Trump said the project would employ 6,000 workers, what this meant was that he would employ locals to build temporary hostels for the migrant workers he would fly in to build the actual structures. Grrrr.

Home for Rent

Finally, what is the one thing that Scotland doesn’t need any more of? Golf courses! There are almost 600 registered golf courses in Scotland, with arguably some of the finest courses in the world in the shape of Gleneagles, St. Andrews and Carnoustie. Why wreck an area of great beauty and scientific significance to add one or two more courses to that list that have no chance of being anywhere near as good.

The whole thing reeks of corruption and the money men lording over the poor people, even if there is no actual wrongdoing. It is the feeling that this rich man is going to get what he wants and the Scottish Government are helping him along the way. Not something the Scottish people take kindly too.

What do you think?

Mary McLeod organises golf vacations Scotland for the American market. She has been organising golf trips to Scotland since she grew up around her golf pro father.

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