Using the bone structure of a King penguin as a guide, New Zealand archeologists were able to re-assemble the bones of an extinct species of penguin fossilized on the nation's shores.
In Maori, this name loosely translates to 'diver who returns with food'. Quite a fitting name for a penguin, the Kairuku was the largest of the 5 species of penguins common to this era.
Standing at over 1 meter tall (4ft, 2inches), this penguin would tower over our beloved sea birds of today. The Kairuku had a unique shape, donning a large set of flippers and a elongated beak.
Described as an elegant bird by penguin standards, the ancient Kairuku had a long, slender body with short, thick legs and feet.
Citation: "Big NZ fossil penguin reconstructed". BBC news: Science and Environment. 27.02.12
Beginning as a simple idea shared between ocean loving families, the "Family Dive Adventures" were born. These fantastic family led excursions combine a love for ocean exploration with youth education and interactive marine activities including snorkeling and diving.
There are year-round organized expeditions inviting families from around the world to join in on the fun of marine education, conservation, and exploration. Regular destinations include Grand Cayman, Palau, Costa Rica, Galapagos, Fiji, and Belize...just to name a few!
Every summer, children are invited to participate in "Kids Sea Camp" which aims at cultivating a love for the ocean in all the young participants. The idea is that as parents encourage their children to become aware of the ocean environment by having hands-on experiences snorkeling and diving.
The staff at "Family Dive Adventures" is dedicated to promoting education of marine related issues, how living oceans work, thus creating young ambassadors for the future. Activities, games, classroom and in-water adventures help to keep participants motivated and curious about our blue planet.
Please visit the Family Divers on their website, and consider spending your next holiday sharing and teaching your children about the beauty and importance of our ocean environment. An investment in our youth's futures, Family Dive Adventures will nurture your connection to the sea through education and discovery!
Here is a sneak peak at what the Kids Sea Camp is like!!
The Great Barrier Reef, found in the Coral Sea off the north-east coast of Australia, is one of the world's largest protected marine reserves. As the state icon of Queensland, this reef shines as the largest structure built by tiny and amazing Coral Polyps.
The Great Barrier Reef can be seen from outer space, and since be awarded a 'World Heritage Site' listing in 1981, tourism surrounding the reef has generated upwards of $1 Billion a year.
Composed of 2,999 unique reefs, and 900 islands spread over 2,600 Kilometers, a countless amount of wildlife call the reef home.
Some threats to the reef are over-fishing, coral bleaching, and outbreaks of Crown of thorns starfish. Climate change is also a formidable cause for concern.