SEA Days: Kelp Kornucopia

Every month, the third Saturday is a special day at Birch Aquarium: SEA Days!

As the tagline suggests, SEA Days are always full of  “Science, Exploration, and Adventure.” Visitors and members can meet a Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego scientist or other local researcher and get hands-on with science, participate in activity stations, and get creative with a thematic craft.

Name: Jonathan Lavan

Hometown: Harpswell, Maine

Schooling Background or field experience:

Naturalist, Wildlife Expert, Citizen Scientist and Lecturer, Nature Photographer, Scuba Diver, Trip Leader

One word to describe a characteristic a scientist must have: Passion

What is your process in getting the perfect shot in a kelp forest?

It’s really a question of patience and knowing as much about the world of the kelp forest as you can. The rest is luck and opportunity.

What made you want to pursue photography and diving in this environment?

It is one of the truly most unique environments on the planet and most people are barely aware of it. I wanted to share its drama and beauty.

How do you predict kelp forests will change in the future?

Kelp forests, like many ocean (and land) wilderness, is having a genuine struggle right now due to overpopulation and climate change. Hopefully, enough people will care about these delicate and fascinating forests under the sea that they will thrive well into the future. The thousands of wonderful animals that call the kelp forest home deserve that much.

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Scripps Institution of Oceanography UC San Diego