This film is dedicated to Jim Kinane. A loved member of the diving community.
This is the trip film for the search for purple hydrocoral [Stylaster californicus] shot in the waters south of San Diego off the coast of Mexico, at Los Coronados Islands. The film will grow and mature as footage is obtained. This is a compilation from just two dives, as posted on Vimeo.
The Purple Hydrocoral is not easily found or seen in shallow depths and without the help of several friends and the use of scooters we would never have made it there and back. Thanks so much to Kathy, Bob, Jim, and Mike.
On the second dive getting to and from the hydrocoral site involved the use of a live drop and a current line, and is only for advanced divers. With a camera rig the size and complexity of mine, handling reels, watching gauges, and my buddy, I had as much as I wanted to be concerned with.
Purple Hydrocoral – Stylaster californicus – California hydrocoral [not a true coral] is very slow growing organism. They can be found as pink or purple coral and range from Baja to Northern California. They eat plankton that floats by in the water. When most corals die, they usually loose their pigment and turn to a bleach white. Yet, California hydrocoral keeps the color pigment even after the organism is dead. This makes them popular to have in home aquariums. Now, it is illegal in California to harvest the coral for shell collecting.
Other Fun Facts:
• It can take up to 25 years for the coral to grow an inch tall
• Small species of barnacles are found living in the coral from Monterey Bay to Channel Islands
Outdated Source: dfg.ca.gov/mrd/channel_islands/sse_monitoring/spinfo.html
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