Who needs scuba gear? Ex­plore the un­der­wa­ter world with BirdLife South Africa’s Oceans of Life com­pe­ti­tion.

For the past seven years, we’ve been amazed by the qual­ity of the pho­tos from the BirdLife South Africa Oceans of Life com­pe­ti­tion. (See port­fo­lios in go! #81, #108 and #118.) All good things run their course, how­ever, and this year it was time to bid the com­pe­ti­tion farewell with a ret­ro­spec­tive show at the Iziko South Africa Mu­seum in Cape Town from Oc­to­ber 2016 un­til June 2017, in aid of the Se­abird Con­ser­va­tion Pro­gramme. Pro­tect­ing South Africa’s sen­si­tive coast­line and ocean – and the world’s – should be at the very top of our list. Cli­mate change is here and the signs are all around: Rain­fall and snow­fall pat­terns are chang­ing, droughts and floods are hap­pen­ing more of­ten and ex­treme weather events are be­com­ing the norm. In or­der to sur­vive, ma­rine or­gan­isms must adapt by al­ter­ing their be­hav­iour, their habi­tat or their breed­ing pat­terns. But ul­ti­mately, it’s up to us: The global cli­mate will con­tinue to change, but the sever­ity of that change de­pends en­tirely on what hu­mans de­cide do about it.

Learn more about BirdLife South Africa’s con­ser­va­tion work and find out how to get in­volved at birdlife.org.za

The old man and the sea

Chris Fal­lows, Cape Point, South Africa (win­ner, 2014)

A huge ocean sun­fish, also called a mola mola, swims through open wa­ter with two pi­lot fish for com­pany. Viewed in pro­file, the sun­fish has eerily hu­man fea­tures – an old man adrift in the ocean.

HOW? Canon EOS 5D Mark II, 8 – 15 mm lens, shut­ter speed 1/200 sec­ond, aper­ture f8, ISO 250.

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