Secrets of the Sea

These fascinating underwater pictures reveal the full dazzling spectrum of life deep under the ocean.

The awe-inspiring photographs taken by Bob Cranston include a close encounter with a rare giant jellyfish that is twice the size of a fully grown man and a shimmering image of a five-foot-long jumbo Humboldt squid.

His collection also includes amazing pictures of an inquisitive northern elephant seal bull – which grows up to 14 feet in length – and the extremely rare southern right whale.

Dangers of the deep: The giant pelagic jellyfish grows to twice the size of a fully grown man with a nasty sting in its tentaclesDangers of the deep: The giant pelagic jellyfish grows to twice the size of a fully grown man with a nasty sting in its tentacles
 
 
Wondrous sight: Juvenile fish shelter among tentacles of a giant pelagic jellyfish, Channel Islands, California, East Pacific OceanWondrous sight: Juvenile fish shelter among tentacles of a giant pelagic jellyfish, Channel Islands, California, East Pacific Ocean
 
 
Glowing creature: A diver and a jumbo or Humboldt squid at night in the Sea of Cortez, Mexico, Pacific OceanGlowing creature: A diver and a jumbo or Humboldt squid at night in the Sea of Cortez, Mexico, Pacific Ocean
 
 

Mr Cranston began diving at the age of 13 and has lived on his own commercial fishing boat on the California coast for two years.

He has dedicated his life to underwater photography, while also working as a consultant to the US Military Special Forces, training military divers and developing specialized diving equipment.

The 56-year-old now focuses on underwater cinematography for television and Imax film companies.

He has an impressive seven Emmy awards for his stunning work.

 
Blue moon: A northern elephant seal bull, in kelp forest, California, East Pacific OceanBlue moon: A northern elephant seal bull, in kelp forest, California, East Pacific Ocean
 
Strange images: A rare southern right whale with divers, Patagonia, Argentina, South AtlanticStrange images: A rare southern right whale with divers, Patagonia, Argentina, South Atlantic

Speaking from his home in California, Mr Cranston recalled his incredible encounter with the terrifying-looking pelagic jellyfish, or Chrysaora achlyos.

He had been diving in the Pacific Ocean off the Los Coronados Islands, near Mexico, when he stumbled across a group of the monster stingers by accident.

He admitted he and diving friend Howard Hall, 58, who can be seen in the picture, got a little too close for comfort – and suffered a sting as a result.

He said: ‘These are wonderful, big, colorful jellyfish.

Years of exploration: A black or giant pelagic jellyfish, Chrysaora achlyos, drifts over reef and is attacked by Garibaldi in the Channel Islands, CaliforniaYears of exploration: A black or giant pelagic jellyfish, Chrysaora achlyos, drifts over reef and is attacked byGaribaldi in the Channel Islands, California

‘We dived with them for around two hours until we had no more air in our tanks.

‘They are very rare, appearing near California only every ten years, and scientists were surprised and happy to see our photographs.’

He added: ‘We were all very happy to get these rare photographs but sorry to discover they have a painful sting in their tentacles.

‘There were many jellyfish and three divers in the water that day – we got stung.’

Attribution: Emma Reynolds

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About thecommonconstitutionalist

Brent is not a scholar. He’s not an author or speaker (yet). He hasn’t published a book nor does he write articles for magazines (yet). He has no advanced literary degree or pedigree (never will). He is just an American who writes and shares what interests him. He cares about the salvation of this country and a return to its Constitutional roots. He believes in God, country and family.
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