Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The benefits of the salty ocean

The saline qualities of the ocean have some great benefits for us humans as a healing power. If you have ever had a cut or slight skin infection and went swimming in the ocean you will find that the wound becomes cleaner than if you just cleaned it with fresh water and mild skin soap. The salt acts as an astringent and kills the germs and bacteria in the wound. I have also found that swimming in the ocean is one of the best ways how to get rid of blackheads that I know of.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Human suppliments made from ocean life

You have probably heard about the many kinds of human "miracle" drugs and pills that have been made from sea life and ocean water. Everything from seaweed diet pills to pills made from shark cartilage. What bothers me the most is the shark cartilage pills. They are reported to aid in bone development in humans but not much is said about the harvesting of sharks for those pills.

How are the sharks caught? In nets or fished with bait and hooks, or are they the sharks that are caught up in nets while fishermen are fishing for something else? I am intrigued enough to go and look for some answers.

Keiko the killer whale

I happen to be watching a program on TV the other night about captive Killer Whales. The program focused Keiko the whale that was the inspiration for the movie Free Willy. There were many little facts in the show about Keiko that I had not known before. They showed the horrible skin condition he had because of being kept in a small tank while on display in Mexico. The mentioned why his dorsal fin had not developed erect. The show was so fascinating that I did not change the channels during the boring diet pill or mesothelioma ads. I have also found that there is a website devoted to Keiko and it can be found at

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Delicate whale skin

When you think of large mammals you would normally think of elephants and rhinos. As land mammals their skin is rather tough and thick. Now think about whales. Their skin has to be smooth to help them slide through the water.

Whales are victims of whale lice that live on their skin. Their bodies also are host to barnacles that attach themselves to the whales. A mystery in my mind is "how do barnacles catch a swimming whale?"

How do whales rid themselves of their unwanted guests? They can't use skin care products like Willy's lice remover and barnacle cream. What they will do is swim into the mouths of large rivers where the water is less salty. The salinity of the water will often kill or dislodge those parasites.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Recycling old boat sails

There is a company in the Northeast that is doing it's part with recycling. They make an unusual product from old boat sails. They make custom tote bags. The sails are tough and water proof and adapt well as the large bags. The company is called Sea Bags and you can find them at

It is nice to see more innovative companies that are recycling in interesting ways.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Sea turtle in Texas gets a new life

This is a video of a one flipper sea turtle that has been outfitted with a special swim suit that enables it to swim freely.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Travel to Tasmania

About the only thing people think about when they hear the name Tasmania is the cartoon character, The Tasmanian Devil. Often people's thoughts do not wander much farther than that. When asked where Tasmania is the answers would amaze you. Answers like Africa to somewhere near Transylvania and a few actually do know the right answer, off the coast of Australia.

Being a island, Tasmania has a large coast line. Climate ranges from arid and dry in the interior to mild and wet on the southern half of the island. If you are ever lucky enough to visit the island you will want to go on one of the many Tasmania tours that local companies offer. I personally would be interested in the company that runs "Sealife Experience" which is located 1 hour form Hobart and takes people on tours of the islands sea life habitats.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Hair loss in marine mammals

Hair and fat are the ways that nature insulates both land and sea mammals. Both fat and hair keep the body from losing precious heat during either the colder months or living in colder seas. For sea mammals they either have long hair or extra fat, known as blubber, to insulate their bodies from losing heat.

The larger the sea mammal the less hair they tend to have. Whales and dolphins have very minimal hair while sea otters have plenty of hair. Hair loss in the smaller marine mammals can spell death from exposure. When a large population of marine mammals is suffering from excessive hair loss something is either wrong with the environment or a disease might be the cause. Marine biologists must work fast to see what the underlying cause it and best determine what hair loss treatment to put in place. Can the cause be removed or should the mammals be treated?

Sometimes the cause has been in the environment for years and only time and future prevention can cure the ailment.