Download A Fascination for Fish: Adventures of an Underwater Pioneer by David C. Powell, Sylvia A. Earle PDF

By David C. Powell, Sylvia A. Earle

This enticing memoir provides one man's lifelong love of the sea and provides a hugely own, behind-the-scenes examine California's impressive and cutting edge aquariums. David Powell, for a few years curator of the world-renowned Monterey Bay Aquarium, tells the tale of his existence as a pioneering aquarist. From dealing with nice white sharks to transporting smooth fish on bumpy airplanes to nighttime diving for fish within the Indian Ocean, A Fascination for Fish describes a few of the mind-boggling demanding situations that make sleek aquariums attainable and gives an exciting glimpse underneath the ocean's floor.

Powell's profession in diving and aquarium improvement is going again to the start of contemporary equipment in either parts. From the early options he devised to get fish into aquariums alive and fit to his later exploratory dive to a intensity of 11 hundred ft in a two-person submarine, Powell's action-packed narrative conjures up laughter, ask yourself, and philosophical mirrored image. A Fascination for Fish additionally comprises many tales approximately Powell's diving adventures at the California coast, within the Sea of Cortez, and in lots of distant and unique destinations worldwide.

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We’d never heard of anyone seeing a whale underwater, and we had no idea what it would do. Scared at first, we backed ourselves up against the rocks and watched as the whale circled. I realize now that it had never seen anything like us either and was just as intrigued by us as we were by it. Although the whale looked huge to us at the time, it was actually a young one of twenty feet or so. Perhaps its mother told it to stop fooling around with us and get back up with her. About a year or two later I was lucky enough to run into gray whales in the water o¤ Monterey, at a location known as the shale beds.

Located where year-round weather was mild, most of the main exhibits were outdoors. Marineland of the Pacific, perched as it was atop the cli¤s of the Palos Verdes Peninsula in Los Angeles, had a spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island on a clear day. A phone call to curator Ken Norris led to my first job as a professional aquarist—my real break into the field of aquatic biology, on which I had set my heart as a boy in England. It was what I had prepared for, and I was ready. I saw this as my opportunity to share with others the fascination I had for the creatures of the sea: to collect animals and create exhibits that would give land dwellers a glimpse into the underwater world.

The terrain changed considerably and the road began to wind up over steep, rocky hills. The roadbed was now jagged rock cut by frequent eroded gullies. The car had hit bottom many times on the sandy road to Puertecitos, and now it was doing that on the rough road of hard rock. Taking a run to get up an exceptionally steep hill, we hit bottom really hard; this time, we feared, we’d done some damage. Peering under the low Corvair we saw a trickle of fluid coming from the pan of the automatic transaxle—definitely not a good sight in such an out-of-the-way place.

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