Feature Aquarium: Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary, 06/01/2003
This month we have departed from our traditional Featured Aquarium theme to bring you all some shots from "the big aquarium." These photos were taken by James Wiseman using an underwater camera housing for the Fuji S2pro and dual underwater flashes. For those that are curious what this setup looks like, a photo can be found here. Bringing a camera underwater (especially a digital camera) is an excellent way to show others what can only be seen by divers - the underwater world. We hope that you enjoy these photos and are encouraged to someday try SCUBA diving yourself. There is no better way for a reef aquarist to learn about his or her charges.
These photos were taken at the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary - two coral reefs that have formed atop two salt domes 110 miles off the Texas/Louisiana border in the Gulf of Mexico. These reefs are one of 13 marine protected areas that make up the National Marine Sanctuary System. Most people are familiar with the Florida Keys and Channel Islands sanctuaries - but not many know about this secret spot where the water gets up to 84 degrees F and oceanic species like mantas and whale sharks can be seen regularly during the summer. To learn more about the Flower Garden Banks, visit their website at http://flowergarden.noaa.gov