The Sea-gram

   For  ocean lovers, divers,

            and "deep-thinkers."


May, 2012



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           Southern Stingray & Bar Jack, photo by Paul Mila, Grand Cayman

Paul in Cozumel

Welcome to the May issue of Sea-gram, the monthly newsletter from 

On this Memorial Day Weekend, sacrifice three minutes and watch this moving story, Eternal Peace, about Pearl Harbor survivors of the USS Arizona now passing away and choosing interment with their fallen comrades.

Eternal Peace
Eternal Peace

In this issue's Story Behind The Photo(s), enjoy the great shots diver John Hand took in Little Cayman, on a Scuba Network of Long Island dive adventure. 
If you have a good photo with an interesting story, or would like to share a good dive yarn, let me know at and I'll be happy to include your story in a future issue. 
 Our Conservation Corner topic this month concerns an assortment of initiatives. Read up and get involved!
If you know someone who would enjoy reading Sea-gram, please forward a copy to your buddy, using the link at the end of the newsletter. 
To view past Sea-grams click our ARCHIVE link below:

I hope you enjoy Sea-gram !
 Paul J. Mila
 Story Behind The Photos . . . 
       Adventures in Little Cayman              
                        By John Hand 
 Long Island Network Divers member John Hand recently went on a Scuba Network trip to Little Cayman. John took the photo course we teach at Scuba Network, and now comes back with great shots.
Here's John's story behind his photos:  
This hawksbill turtle was foraging around the sponges and corals at about 55 feet. I knew it best to attempt to remain under him to have an opportunity of him rising at an angle with the sun light above. I stayed motionless and as he neared and, as I hoped, he ascended and I clicked off a shot.

This grouper was hovering at approximately 50 feet and seemed quite at ease by my company. His markings seemed striking to me and eyes so wide and dare I say wise. I was hoping to see some dentals cleaning by aiding sea critters to his choppers but all he did was stare at me with a slack jawed gaping appearance. Just like Cletus, the slack jawed yokel of The Simpson's.


 I was diving with Tommy Swift and he was in front of me a by 10 feet or so and our depth was by my best guess 65 feet. Tommy turned his head around like an owl and by the mere look in his eyes, I knew he spotted something special. As I approached, there was a 5-6 foot verdant green moray eel under a coral rock structure with piercing blue Paul Newman like peepers. He was out of his crevice by a third of his body for a time and I cautiously shot several pix. I remembered what Paul remarked about lighting/shadowing/over/underexposure, and I knew in order to have the best results, I needed to experiment with bracketing in all its forms. I respect the aquatic wild life and I know not to get too close to a large moray and not to antagonize it in any way. So, I snapped with the filter(strobe diffuser), then without, then maneuvering the strobe arm and did my best to get a decent photograph. 


All pix were taken with the Sea Life 1200, using a wide angle lens and strobe. 


The common denominator behind all three photos is that John got heads and eyes, not tails and butts. 
Good positioning is the secret to getting great shots. Anticipate how sea creatures are moving. Get in front and let them come toward you. Don't chase them or swim at them.
Conservation Corner . . .
Assorted Initiatives
Sea-gram reader Martha Weisberg sent in this story from the Manta Trust, about threats to Manta Rays from destructive fishing practices:
Martha also sent us this link from Shark Savers, about a petition requesting New York legislators to sign the anti-shark-finning bill currently under consideration in Congress:
Joyce Bryk of the Audubon Society sent us this news from the NRDC (National Resources Defense Council), about a recent victory concerning fin whales:
Sea-gram fan Evelyn Reisert sent us this amazing story and a petition, regarding Mattel Corporation's new toy, encouraging children to kill sharks (don't they get it?):

About is your home for exciting dive adventure novels (in both e-format and print format), YouTube videos featuring ocean creatures, and more.
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Click on the reading dolphin and swim
 into our website


Thanks for visiting; we'll see you next month!
Paul J. Mila 
 Paul in Cozumel
75 Titus Avenue
Carle Place, New York 11514


To forward Sea-gram to a friend, please click the "Forward email" link below.
In This Issue
The Story Behind The Photo: Cayman Island Photo Adventure
Conservation Corner: Various Conservation Alternatives
 Featured Article in this Conservation Corner:
A Gumbo soup of conservation initiatives.
Lower left column.

Quick Links
Updates & Miscellaneous Features

 and their multiple personalities
 Dolphins mystify, entertain, and enchant us. Those who have the good fortune to interact with them never forget their encounters.
Here are several very different situations, illustrating the unique and very individual personalities of these incredible beings.
  Mirror experiments by scientist Diana Reiss shows dolphins have a sense of "self."
In this video story a dolphin helps humans save a pair of stranded whales:
Dolphin saves whales in New Zealand
Dolphin saves whales in New Zealand


When is comes to group play, these surfing dolphins know how to enjoy themselves.





Tales of dolphins cooperating with humans to catch fish and share the bounty go back for ages.
In this recent story, dolphins herd fish toward fishermen, to their mutual benefit.

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Last year I had the pleasure of diving in Cozumel with Tony and Cody Gartner.

Recently Tony and his son Cody were on a shark feeding dive in St. Maarten and sent this great shark photo. Here's their story:


"This photo was taken on Friday Afternoon January 6th 2012 off St Maarten during the Ocean Explorers famous "Shark Dive."
Depth about 55 feet, visibility about 50 feet.
In the photo is our Dive Master Jeferson.
The photo was taken by Cody Gartner with a very simple SeaLife DC1400 Point-and-Shoot Camera - No Strobe."
  TGartner - Shark feeding

             Thanks for sharing, Tony!

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A fun divesite, where you can rent a beachfront condo, view great dive photos, and more!

For the best in scuba diving, including basic and advanced lessons, and continuing education, equipment sales and repair, world-wide dive adventures, and more, visit Scuba Network of Long Island, in Carle Place.
More information on their website:
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Looking for unique art?
Stop by Galleria Azul, next time you're in Cozumel, or browse artist Greg Dietrich's website:
Available Link! Post a link to your web site here!
E-mail for details.
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