Monday, April 23, 2012

Kiteboarding: Marine Life - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

"Kiteboarding: Marine Life - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly"," Kite propelled gliding and flying across the water to remote locations is fun, but amidst all the excitement we sometimes forget that we are explorers, and guests in an element that is not our own. Here is a brief guide to the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly that you are likely to encounter throughout your kiteboarding adventures. Some of the more memorable are sea turtles, dolphins, whales, and flying fish. Kiteboarding in shallow tropical waters will reveal schools of fish with myriad colors and behaviors that are fun observe. The shallows offer sea birds such as sea gulls, pelicans, plovers, and cranes. There are more animals that are fun to encounter than i can mention. The Bad Do not fear, but respect these animals. In fact, I only label these animals ""Bad"" in order to accentuate that they have defensive adaptations, or reflexive behaviors that can potentially harm people. Stingrays: There are many species of stingray to observe in the water. Large fan-like fins propel and glide Rays through the water. Stealth is the premier method. Burying themselves up to their eyeballs in sand stingrays lay in wait for prey, or for predators to pass them by. Train yourself to look for shallow raised discs under the sand in order to spot the rays while they are buried. A long and flexible tail, armed at the tip with a barbed spear, that is often accompanied by a toxin. How to avoid being barbed by a ray. Also keep a sharp eye for their telltale round or rhomboidal shape buried just under the surface of the sand. The ray venom is a nerve toxin derived from long-strand proteins. If you are stung, then immerse the wound in hot but not scalding water for about half an hour. Finally do not cauterize or sew the wound unless you must stop heavy bleeding. If swelling persists wrap the wound in a sports wrap bandage over the band-aid. Cnidarians, commonly, are non-lethal to humans and pack less punch than a stingray. Unfortunately Jellies are hard to distinguish between the good and the bad, and identification is compounded with problems because you are kiteboarding over the water at 25 miles an hour. These sites often describe what times of the year, and where in the world, dangerous jellies tend to pop up. Scanning the beach will also tell you a lot about the happening off the shorline waters. And lets face it, there are some creatures therein that we do not have any advantages over. I am a believer in that sharks do not normally behave aggressively towards people, and they may very well be harmless. you wouldn't jump into a snowy Alaskan forest with a pack of wolves albeit cute and cuddly looking, would you? So be wary of sharks in the water and my advise is to wait until they have passed on before you go back out on the water. LEARN SOMETHING NEW AND EXCITING