The Scuttlefish

Love the Ocean. Wish you were here.

Month: May, 2015

An Enraged Swordfish Just Speared and Killed a Spearfisherman in Hawaii


The swordfish measured six feet (including the bill) and weighed 40 pounds. Photo: Reuters.

47 year old Captain Randy Llanes was in Honokohau Harbor when he came across a juvenile swordfish cruising the shallows, an unusual sight.

Llanes jumped in with his speargun and stuck the fish, but upon receiving the blow, the fish lashed out and reciprocated, planting its own spear, or bill, into Llanes chest.

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The Definitive Guide: The Wirecutter’s Best Summer Gear for Sand, Surf, and Sun. From the Crew of The Scuttlefish.


Photo: Quinn Dixon.

A few months ago, I started working with Wirecutter and Scuttlefish founder Brian Lam – and a slew of talented editors and waterpeople – on an update to last year’s Wirecutter Summer Gear Guide.


Photo: Quinn Dixon.

After a serious expenditure of editorial energy – somewhere around 200 combined hours (at least), we’re proud to unveil the work of authors Jaimal Yogis and Mark Lukach, filmmaker Sachi Cunningham, former Outside online editor Joe Spring, fisherman and Scuttlefish writer Owen Burke, surf Divas Nicole Grodesky, Kate Barattini and underwater photographer Abi Mullens. What follows an editorially unbiased and journalistically pursued summertime gear guide that is frankly, like nothing I’ve ever worked on, and nothing I’ve ever seen.

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“Crabbing Lingo”: A 20th Century Guide to Soft Shell Crabs


Image: Public Domain.

(This article in the Charleston paper, Dec 24, 1919, is about Maryland crabbing, and was published in hopes that Charleston could establish an equally successful industry. -OJB)

Crabbing Lingo

Many dealers catch “peelers,” that is, crabs that will shed shortly, and let them finish peeling in floats constructed for the purpose. These vary all the way from “rank peelers” and “busters” to “sweet, fat, and green” crabs, and “buckrams.” When a crab is getting ready to shed, a line appears on the next to the last joint of the back fins. If the line is white, the crab is thrown back, for it will die before shedding; if the line is pink, the crab is a peeler. It will shed in a few days. ‘A rank peeler’ will shed within a day. A crab of which the back shell has cracked loose from the apron is called “a buster,’ and will usually shed within an hour or two. The large male crabs are called “Jimmies” by the fishermen. A buckram is a soft crab become leathery and too hard to ship.

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How Mexico’s Cabo Pulmo Is Paving the Way for Marine Conservation

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Thousands upon thousands of bigeye jacks, now worth more dead than alive, swarm David Castro, whose father spearheaded the conservation project. Photo: Dr. Octavio Aburto Oropeza.

Two decades ago, the fishing industry–and ecosystem–of Baja, Mexico’s remote seaside village of Cabo Pulmo was on the verge of collapse. A local took initiative, scoured the oceanography world and grassroots activists (from near and far) to bring the bay back to what it once was.

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A New Take on the Surfin’/Snowboarding Safari: School Bus Style

nomad bus

Photo by Let’s Be Nomads.

One year ago, diehard snowboarders/surfers Val and Tim from Belgium dreamed of a nomadic life, chasing waves and moguls. Like many who seek outdoor adventures, nature doesn’t always play nice – waves go flat, powder turns to puddles. Frustrated by the difficulty of changing direction on a whim, the couple envisioned a new way of life that would blend a tiny house concept with movability. What they came up with was the perfect hybrid – a converted 12 meter U.S. school bus, equipped to easily find the next mountain with the best powder. But the ride doesn’t stop at the mountain. The bus morphs into a surf-chasing machine this summer 2015!

I Was Drowning.

Pedro Calado at Puerto Escondido, Mexico, in the right place at the wrong time. Photo:

Brazilian surfer Pedro Calado–who frequents Jaws on Maui and Nazaré in Portugal–is no stranger to big waves or big wipeouts, but this, he says, was the worst of his life.

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Screenshot from Surfline’s “Greatest Wipeouts”.

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Watch as Greenpeace Destroys Historic Artwork to Protest Shell’s Deep Sea Drilling in the Arctic

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William Bradford’s “An Arctic Summer: Boring Through the Pack in Melville Bay”, up in smoke. Screenshot from Greenpeace’s YouTube video, “A Song of Oil, Ice and Fire”.

The imagery is of chaos, doom and gloom, but the message is clear. Shell is now within weeks of beginning their exploits in the Arctic Circle, and as protests like last week’s “kayaktivist” blockade in Seattle take place, Greenpeace hopes this video will help fuel the spirit of resistance.

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Andrew Wyeth’s Christina’s World, charred. Screenshot from Greenpeace’s YouTube video, “A Song of Oil, Ice and Fire”.

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In the Galápagos, Crabs Hitch Rides on Iguanas


“Crabbing a Ride.” Fernandina Island, the Galápagos. Photo: Nancy Leigh/National Geographic Your Shot.

The relationship here has been observed on several occasions, and is said to be a cleaning symbiosis between the “Sally Lightfoot” (Grapsus grapsus) and the marine iguana (Amblyrhynchus cristatus), unique to the Galápagos.

The “Sally Lightfoot”, or red rock crab feeds off of the dead algae on the iguana’s skin, and the iguana is then able to forego the inconvenience of having to maintain its own hygiene. Where can I get one of these things?

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