scuba diving news

100 Deadly Skills: How To Survive Any Dangerous Situation

Insert from the illustrated manual 100 Deadly Skills

Jon Whittle

Skill 84
Learning to discreetly clear your scuba mask (without leaving a bubble trail) is just one of the 100 deadly skills.

Clint Emerson Author of 100 Deadly Skills

Courtesy of Clint Emerson

Clint Emerson
After spending 20 years navigating deadly situations with the National Security Agency and SEAL Team Six, Clint has just released an illustrated guide to to surviving any dangerous situation.

Clint Emerson spent 20 years navigating deadly situations with the National Security Agency and the elite SEAL Team Six. Now retired, he’s just released the illustrated 100 Deadly Skills: The SEAL Operative’s Guide to Eluding Pursuers, Evading Capture and Surviving Any Dangerous Situation, which includes scuba-friendly skills such as clearing a flooded mask without a bubble trail (No. 84), crossing enemy borders by sea (No. 11) and surviving a drowning while restrained (No. 88). We spoke with him about the secrets of his life and work (and he never even offered to kill us afterward).

Q: Were you a diver before your SEAL service?

A: Growing up in Saudi Arabia, boredom was abundant, so diving and Boy Scouts became my pastimes. I got certified as soon as I turned 12 and have never stopped diving. Learning to dive in the Persian Gulf was actually childhood “training,” prepping for an unknown future.

Q: What’s the most valuable thing about 100 Deadly Skills?

A: It’s not about becoming more deadly — it’s about becoming more safe and secure by leveraging the 100 skills. Divers travel the globe; these skills are useful for anyone traveling abroad or domestically. And people who enjoy new adventures and taking calculated risks will certainly enjoy the book.

Book cover for 100 Deadly Skills

Jon Whittle

100 Deadly Skills
The SEAL Operative’s Guide to Eluding Pursuers, Evading Capture, and Surviving Any Dangerous Situation

Q: Have you ever had to rely on your scuba skills in a life-or-death situation?

A: Fortunately, I have never had to jump from an enemy ship to my dive rig staged 20 feet below the pier — or maybe I did, hmm, I can’t remember. [Laughs.] As a kid, an adult dive partner left me behind at a tire reef in the Persian Gulf — a not-so-good dive partner, to say the least. In times of crisis, remaining calm, cool and collected becomes the most valuable tool, not having the latest, greatest gear on your back. Most of the time, the difference between life and death is how you react.

Q: What are the crucial “deadly skills” for divers?

A: As a SEAL we have several diving mantras: Never dive alone. Plan your dive, dive your plan . Don’t be scared of the dark. And dive with a full bladder, because urine is warm.

100 Deadly Skills: How To Survive Any Dangerous Situation Read More »

VIDEO: Hundreds of Manatees Overtake Three Sisters Springs in Florida
Please enable Javascript to watch this video

Three Sisters Springs in Crystal River, Florida, is widely known by underwater photographers and snorkelers for its resident manatees — but this week, these “mermaids” took over the marine sanctuary by storm.

According to USA Today, roughly 300 manatees huddled together in Three Sisters Springs on Monday. This massive aggregation resulted in a one-acre closure of the springs, USA Today reported, but the area has since been reopened until the manatees return during the next tidal change.

A migratory species, West Indian Manatees spend the winter months in shallow, slow-moving, Florida waters — including estuaries, canals, rivers and coastal areas — and they are known to travel to Three Sisters Springs annually during high tides.
Please enable Javascript to watch this video

On Jan. 7, 2016, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a proposal for a change in classification of the West Indian Manatee from endangered to threatened under the Endangered Species Act. According to the FWS website, this classification “will not affect federal protections currently afforded by the ESA,” and said that conservation efforts to fully recover manatee populations will continue.

“It is probably safe to say that Florida’s manatee population is in recovery,” says Miles Saunders, Media Relations and Marketing Specialist for Visit Citrus. “Last year’s statewide synoptic survey reported 6,063 manatees in Florida. Contrast that to the first year of that survey in 1991 when there were 1,267. This January, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Joyce Kleen reported 1,042 manatees in Kings Bay and the Homosassa River alone.”

Though this is not the largest manatee aggregation recorded in Three Sisters, 2016 has been a record-breaking one for manatee populations in Citrus County and King’s Bay. After an aerial survey by Crystal River Wildlife Refuge on Jan. 12, refuge biologist Joyce Kleen reported an all-time record of 1,042 manatees across a survey route spanning from the Crystal River Power Plant to Blue Waters in Homosassa. The previous record was 1,016 manatees in February 2015.
Please enable Javascript to watch this video

VIDEO: Hundreds of Manatees Overtake Three Sisters Springs in Florida Read More »

Take Action To Save Manatees in Crystal River

Underwater Photo Manatee in Springs


Save the Manatee Club

Want to get involved in manatee conservation? Here’s how you can help.

MISSION Protecting manatees in their aquatic habitat to aid survival for future generations

HQ Maitland, Florida YEAR STARTED 1981 CONTACT

PROJECT Though manatees have been reclassified from an endangered to a threatened species, the SMC — founded by Jimmy Buffett — continues to protect the well-being of these marine mammals and their habitats through public awareness, sponsorship of research and rehabilitation, and advocacy for continued protection and regulation of sanctuaries.

Take Action!

1 Go Sightseeing

Need an excuse to go diving or snorkeling in the Sunshine State? We’ve got you covered. Channel your inner citizen scientist by documenting any manatee encounters you’ve had in Florida’s coastal regions. Simply submit a sighting form at with a description of your manatee sighting and any photos to help researchers track the population.

2 Adopt a Manatee

With SMC’s Adopt-a-Manatee program, you’ll enjoy commitment-free parenting for a sea cow in need. Images and histories of real-life manatees in Florida and Alabama that are in need of adoption are available on SMC’s website; in exchange for a $25 fee, you’ll receive an adoption certificate, photo and biography of your new bundle of joy. All adoption funds go to local reseach and conservation efforts.

3 Join the Club

Take action to protect these threatened animals by joining the SMC team. Whether you’re interested in grass-roots activism for government policy change, lending your voice to educate communities about manatee conservation or engaging with attendees at manatee- themed festivals and events, there’s an activism route to suit your interests, and opportunities aren’t limited to East Coast do-gooders.

Take Action To Save Manatees in Crystal River Read More »

VIDEO: Divers Rescue Entangled Manta Ray

Manta Rescue

It’s amazing what divers can do to save marine life — and what life-changing experiences come with it! This video was shot by Thomaz Monteiro and Flavia Passaglia during a dive trip in Bat Islands, Costa Rica. This manta ray was entangled by a fishing net and approached the divers. Brian Thompson is shown gently cutting the manta free from the net, allowing the creature to “live with no pain.”

All rights reserved / Todos os direitos reservados.

VIDEO: Divers Rescue Entangled Manta Ray Read More »

Sea Watch: Electric Rays

The electric ray is one of those creatures that might have simultaneously fascinated and frightened you as a child. Lurking unseen on the seafloor, it has the power to send a jolt of painful electricity rippling through your body. The mechanism that provides this power is unique, emanating from kidney-shaped organs made of striated muscle located on either side of the ray’s head. These modified muscles contain columns of electrocytes — jelly-filled electric plates, kind of like rows of batteries — that electric rays use to generate their charge.

pacific electric ray

Noam Kortler

The Pacific electric ray is found off the coast of California.

atlantic electric ray


The Atlantic’s beautiful common torpedo ray belies its pedestrian name.

There are many varieties of the electric ray. In the United States, one common type is the Pacific electric ray, found off the California coast. These rays are part of the Torpedinidae family, commonly called torpedoes — which is where we got the name for the weapon — that includes 22 species around the world. The Pacific electric ray can grow fairly large, about 4 feet long, and generates about 45 volts of electricity, which it uses for self-defense and to stun its prey.

The Pacific electric ray’s cousin on the East Coast is called the Atlantic torpedo, and it’s even larger, growing up to 6 feet long and nearly 200 pounds. These behemoth blasters pack the largest punch of any electric ray, producing up to 220 volts of electricity.

The Atlantic torpedoes can be found in coastal waters on both sides of the Atlantic, though they prefer cooler water so are more often seen in locations such as New England and the Mediterranean Sea.

There’s a second family of electric rays called Narcinidae; the main difference between the two is how they give birth, not how they deliver their electrical payload. The name Narcinidae — and its common name, numbfish — comes from the ancient Greeks, who used the rays as a form of anesthesia because of the localized numbing sensation that their shock left behind.

Numbfish are found all over the world; they are not only smaller than the torpedoes — only about 2 feet at the largest — but they also deliver a lesser jolt, ranging from 10 to 35 volts.

The habitat of one type of numbfish — the bullseye electric ray — overlaps with the Pacific electric ray, but you’re more likely to spot the bullseye in the Sea of Cortez than Southern California. It’s easy to spot if you do come across one, thanks to the noticeable eyespot marking it has at the center of its body.

Sea Watch: Electric Rays Read More »

Scroll to Top