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Undersea Edens

Undersea Edens wins 'Best Series' award at IWFF

April 5, 2010

Today, the International Wildlife Film Festival at Missoula, Montana announced its winners for 2010. Undersea Edens won the category for 'Best Series' (under $500K) which is a FANTASTIC award for producers Nate Scripture, David Hannan and their teams collaborating on this international co-production.

See the full news item here →

Climate Change and Coral Reefs Classroom Resources - hosted by Dr. Kiki Sanford
Climate Change and Coral Reefs Classroom Resources - featuring Professor Peter Harrison
Climate Change and Coral Reefs Classroom Resources - featuring Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg

Coral Reef Education Videos

October 22, 2010

Hosted by Dr. Kiki Sanford, a series of innovative educational videos and learning resources explore how coral reef ecosystems function and the effects of human impacts and increasing CO2 in the atmosphere and the oceans.

A new package of video modules currently in production focus on coral reproduction and reef ecology and feature Dr. Peter Harrisson, Professor in Marine Ecology and Director of Marine Studies at Southern Cross University, Australia.

A comprehensive classroom resource package with video modules and a 28 min video presentation about coral reefs and climate change featuring Prof. Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, University of Queensland, have recently been completed. (See below for the full online video preview).

Produced in collaboration with Education Services Australia, Specialty Studios and Plankton Productions, the programs and educational resources are available from The Video Project and The Le@rning Federation, Australia's national online education initiative.

Read the full news item and watch the video here →

Climate Change and Coral Reefs Classroom Resources - hosted by Dr. Kiki Sanford
Climate Change and Coral Reefs Classroom Resources - featuring Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg

Climate Change and Coral Reefs - Classroom Resources Available

September 1, 2010

Rising sea temperatures are pushing the world's coral reefs to the edge of extinction. The growing damage is an early warning of the danger CO2 emissions pose to the world's oceans and other ecosystems. These rich, sensitive ecosystems are vital to the survival of one-quarter of all sea life and the economies of many countries.

Created in collaboration with Education Services Australia, Specialty Studios and Plankton Productions, a comprehensive new classroom resource kit is an ideal tool for teaching about the science of climate change, its impact on our oceans, and how coral reef ecosystems work.

Hosted by Dr Kiki Sanford and featuring Prof. Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, the video modules and guide materials are aligned with curriculum standards for education in science and are now available on Australian and NZ online education portals and also on DVD in North America.

Read the full news item here →

Coral Reefs and Climate Change: the guide for education and awareness - book cover #

Coral Reefs and Climate Change: the guide for education and awareness

March 7, 2010

The CoralWatch team at UQ has just produced a new book “Coral Reefs and Climate Change: the guide for education and awareness”.

This book focuses on coral reefs, the astonishing abundance of life within them and the impacts of climate change on this beautiful environment. There is hope for reefs but we must act now. Coral reefs are being lost more than five times faster than rainforest and it is up to us to prevent their continued degradation.

The book explains the effects of climate change by using coral reefs as an example. Its aim is to inform, educate and enable people to begin to question the future that we are creating right now. It combines some of the latest scientific research with informative imagery to cover topics such as oceanography, coral reef biology, the issues of climate change and suggestions for ways forward. The book is not aimed at scientists but at educators, students, reef enthusiasts, professionals and interested people.

Read the full news item here →

Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken Blu-ray DVD

Roadshow release 3 titles by David Hannan on Blu-ray Disc

Feb 10, 2010

Roadshow today released 3 new Blu-ray Disc titles by David Hannan on their MyFun.DVD label throughout Australia and New Zealand. Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken, Antarctica Dreaming - Wildlife on Ice and Serenity - Southern Seas all showcase the superb HD photography David is known for.

Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken is an extravaganza of the undersea world, while Antarctica Dreaming - Wildlife on Ice transports viewers to a pristine wilderness. Serenity - Southern Seas is in a more ambient style and features a relaxing soundtrack by Terry Oldfield.

Filmed in High Definition with particular attention to quality image reproduction, David's style goes beyond the traditional TV documentary format to instead transform a home flat-screen into a timeless moving work of art.

Read the full news item here →

Plankton goes to Copenhagen - photo of Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg Ph. D. - Director of the Global Change Institute at the University of Queensland, Australia #

Plankton goes to Copenhagen

2 December, 2009

Not just one, but two projects with Plankton participation will be shown in Copenhagen during the COP15 Climate Conference. AQUA will screen during the event and Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg will be showing a keynote presentation about climate change & coral reefs.

Read the full news item here →

Lihou411 - A Climate Change Odyssey - Video Diary #

Project Lihou 411 - A Climate Change Odyssey - Video Diary

1 December, 2009

From December 7, David and his camera join an expedition to the Coral Sea visiting remote areas rarely seen. The progress of the journey is being recorded as a series of Video Diary stories syndicated across several web sites and are updated every few days. Stay tuned as the voyage unfolds!

Ecological consultant & researcher Simon Mustoe of AES (Ecology Solutions), is Organiser & expedition leader of Project Lihou and has setup a blog style web-portal to aggregate field reports at

Craig Malina, business manager of The Video Project, helped broker syndication of the web video series with Matter Network, the leading syndicator of news, videos and web applications focused on solutions to environmental and social challenges.

Naturally David Hannan and the team at Plankton Productions are delighted to assist with the production of this 'teaser' episode to help kick-off a very topical focus on Australia's Coral Sea.

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To follow the journey day by day visit: and also watch here

Coral Sea Campaigner for AMCS, Nicola Temple, has joined the team and in addition to narrating the webvideos, is also publishing a detailed account of the expedition. You can follow Nicolas version of the story as it unfolds here

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Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken Multi-platform Delivery

Updated: September 23, 2009

Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken is currently being completed for release on DVD and BluRay at the end of 2009 and during 2010.

The program is a mesmerizing and poignant celebration of one of the planet's great natural wonders. More than a DVD or BluRay product, it's a window onto another world - and David's passion! Several different ways are being developed to access this unique vision.

A series of 'gala premier' showings are planned around Australia with details to be announced.

This is no ordinary DVD or BluRay disc, it's a fully featured package of options - with many different ways of exploring David's world of coral reefs.

Viewers can select to have a music-only experience, and enjoy the film as an exceptional relaxation video.

Additionally, pop-up text with creature identification or interesting facts about ocean issues can be activated, turning the program into a powerful educational resource. Meanwhile, for a more classic documentary experience, ‘switch on’ an informative narration track, or peek 'behind the scenes' with David Hannan or Tania Rose.

Alternatively, selected scenes or even the whole program can be played to loop on 'repeat' turning the screen into a fascinating marine aquarium. Enhancing the package is the inclusion of 60 minutes of additional, specially created 'virtual decor' in different styles for creating unique moving digital art displays.

More in-depth 'educational modules' are currently being developed for separate release in the future, featuring a greater online presence. Some footage from the collection is also available for licensing to other producers.

Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken will be released in Australia & New Zealand late 2009 and world-wide during 2010.

Related news articles:

Virtual Decor at Amis Restaurant
Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken - World First Screening

Virtual Decor photo at Amis Restaurant #

Virtual Decor at Amis Restaurant

19 September, 2009
Written by Peter Simon

Long cherished desires to complement Cuisine with Digital Art came to fruition on the 'Special Marine Night' of 18th Sept 2009 at Amis restaurant, Nth Stradbroke Island,

Dave Hannan's 'Aquatic Virtual Decor' surrounded diners being treated to a 14 course culinary adventure led by master chef Peter Roelfes currently on a 6 star sabbatical.

The occasion of a fundraiser for local youth activities was a perfect opportunity to preview the versatility of some special features of 'Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken' on 7 different large screens setup around the venue (with several borrowed from willing local home loungerooms).

Expansive Moreton Bay and ocean views from the Pt Lookout dress-circle location provided a spectacular backdrop for arriving guests entering reception to be greeted by images of dawn & twighlight moods in 'Serenity-Southern Seas' projected from Blu-ray disc onto a large hanging screen.

Read the full news item here →

Smart-nudi #

Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken - World First Screening

May 7, 2009
by Toni Houston

On Saturday, 2nd May 2009, Coral Sea Dreaming - Awaken had its much anticipated world first public screening at the Lounge Cinema in the Arts Factory, Byron Bay, Australia. As part of the Byron Underwater Festival 2009, it was a highly successful and enjoyable event and a fitting preview of David Hannan's great upcoming masterpiece about the coral reef environment.

Professor Peter Harrison - Director of Marine Studies at Southern Cross University - opened the evening with a moving speech giving tribute to David's masterful cinematography and dedication to reef conservation, and also highlighting the major threats facing the coral environs.

The film's core team were all in attendance, including David Hannan (Cinematographer/Producer/Editor), Tania Rose (Composer), Lucy Trippett (Co-producer), Peter Simon (Post Producer), Sam Hannan (Sound Designer) and Toni Houston (Script Writer). It was an occasion to celebrate years of dedication in completing the project and a moment to reflect on what still lies ahead in getting the film into general release during 2009 and beyond.

Read the full news item here →

Byron Bay - Byron Underwater Festival 2009
Sea Sick - The Global Ocean in Crisis #

Book review for "Sea Sick" by Alanna Mitchell

March 3, 2009
written by Toni Houston

Sea Sick is the first book to examine the current state of the world’s ocean system, and the dire impact of humankind.

Human activity is altering the ocean in every way, from temperature to salinity, from acidity to circulation. Each of these changes not only drastically affects the marine world, but more alarming has dire consequences for all life on earth.

This is where the planet's most serious ecological crisis is unfolding, and unfolding fast - in the Oceans.

Author Alanna Mitchell joins the crews of leading scientists in nine of the global ocean’s hotspots to see firsthand what is really happening around the world. Whether it’s the impact of coral reef bleaching, the puzzle of the oxygen-less dead zones such as the one in the Gulf of Mexico, or the shocking implications of the changing pH balance of the sea, Mitchell explains the science behind the story to create an engaging, accessible yet authoritative account.

Like countless scientists around the world, her research produces an alarming prognosis for the health of our planet, and reveals that we are at a critical 'tipping point'.

Read the full news item and view image samples here →

Map of Western Australia Coast Line - Climate Change May Avoid Bleaching of Ningaloo Corals #

Climate Change May Avoid Bleaching of Ningaloo Corals

Written by Sue Emmett
Monday, 22 September 2008

A QUIRK of nature may protect Ningaloo Reef corals from excessive bleaching as climate change increases sea temperatures this century.

University of Western Australia School of Environmental Systems Engineeering Professor Charitha Pattiaratchi says winds blowing parallel to the Ningaloo Reef coastline in summer produce upwelling of cold water from the ocean depths to the surface.

This colder water acts as an ‘insulator’ between the Leeuwin Current’s warm water and Ningaloo Reef.

To read the full article published on Science Network Western Australia visit

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Corals in the Keppel Island Region Form New Heat-Beating Partnerships

March 20, 2008

In the first observation of its kind, a coral community in the southern inshore region of the Great Barrier Reef is showing signs of adjusting to higher sea surface temperature by quickly changing its main algal partners to types that can better cope with the heat.

An AIMS field study near Miall Island, part of the Keppel group of 15 islands on the southern Great Barrier Reef off the Queensland coast near Rockhampton, has revealed a remarkable feat of acclimatisation; the only time such an event has been observed in natural conditions on a coral reef.

The work, which appears today in the prestigious UK scientific journal the Proceedings of the Royal Society, has shown that a phenomenon known as "symbiont shuffling" took place after a bleaching event in 2006 in the Acropora millepora coral population studied.

To read the full press release issued by AIMS visit

An octopus seemingly lifting a "porites" Coral #

Alarm bells as Evidence of Slowed Coral Growth on the Great Barrier Reef Emerges

March 5, 2008

Worrying signs that warmer seawater combined with a possible change in the ocean's acid balance may be curtailing the growth of an important reef-building coral species have been documented by a research team from AIMS in Townsville.

The paper, published in the journal Global Change Biology*, points to a 21 per cent decline in the rate at which Porites corals in two regions of the northern Great Barrier Reef (GBR) have added to their calcium carbonate skeletons over the past 16 years.

The AIMS research team analysed a total of 38 Porites colonies from the two regions. Porites are a common massive coral with a striking spherical appearance. They are long-lived and distributed widely around the Indian and Pacific oceans.

To read the full press release issued by AIMS visit

Photograph of sharks swimming underwater - Campaign to Stop Shark Finning on the Great Barrier Reef #

Campaign to Stop Shark Finning on the Great Barrier Reef

February, 2008

An alarming new proposal by the Queensland Government will establish a dedicated shark fishery in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area which will service the international trade in shark fin.

The Australian Marine Conservation Society (and anyone who cares for our oceans) is astonished by this proposal, in which Queensland's fisheries department (DPI&F) plans to legitimise one of the most unsustainable forms of fishing on the planet - shark fin fishing. With over 90% of the world's sharks and other big fish gone from our oceans, this project is unsustainable, unethical and will be flatly rejected by the Australian public.

Not only is the Queensland Government proposing to hand out specific fishing licenses for shark fin fishing, which will entrench the practice for years, they are planning to legitimise shark fishing in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and in the Marine Parks of Moreton Bay and the Great Sandy Straits with this new license proposal. To read the full article as well as updates visit the AMCS website...

You can help stop this madness by taking action:

New Website Launched pic #

Come Dive Fabulous Papua New Guinea With Us! - April/ May 2008

Febraury 21, 2007

Take advantage of this great opportunity to dive Papua New Guinea with Plankton Productions in April/ May 2008.

For more information including booking details click here →

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Hybrid HD-DVD titles Hit the Market

February 19, 2007

USA based Distributer DVD International is re-releasing Antarctica Dreaming and Serenity - Southern Seas in a hybrid HD-DVD / DVD format on it's new HD-Scape label. The discs are playable in either Standard Definition players or on new HD-DVD players. Both programs have been produced entirely in High Definition with soundtracks mixed in 5.1 surround sound.

Read the full news item here →

Plate Corals #

Report Warns about Carbon Dioxide Threats to Marine Life

July 5, 2006

BOULDER - Worldwide emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning are dramatically altering ocean chemistry and threatening marine organisms, including corals, that secrete skeletal structures and support oceanic biodiversity. A landmark report released today summarizes the known effects of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide on these organisms, known as marine calcifiers, and recommends future research for determining the extent of the impacts.

"It is clear that seawater chemistry will change in coming decades and centuries in ways that will dramatically alter marine life," says Joan Kleypas, the report's lead author and a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder. "But we are only beginning to understand the complex interactions between large-scale chemistry changes and marine ecology. It is vital to develop research strategies to better understand the long-term vulnerabilities of sensitive marine organisms to these changes."

The report, "Impacts of Ocean Acidification on Coral Reefs and Other Marine Calcifiers," warns that oceans worldwide absorbed approximately 118 billion metric tons of carbon between 1800 and 1994. Oceans are naturally alkaline, and they are expected to remain so, but the interaction with carbon dioxide is making them less alkaline and more acidic. The increased acidity lowers the concentration of carbonate ion, a building block of the calcium carbonate that many marine organisms use to grow their skeletons and create coral reef structures.

"This is leading to the most dramatic changes in marine chemistry in at least the past 650,000 years," says Richard Feely, one of the authors and an oceanographer at NOAA's Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory (PMEL) in Seattle.

The report follows a workshop funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and hosted by the U.S. Geological Survey Integrated Science Center in St. Petersburg, Florida. [...]

Read the full article published on the University Corporation for Atomspheric Research website


WATC Shoot in May 2006

May 24, 2006

Plankton Productions successfully tendered for and was contracted to do a major HD promotional shoot of Ningaloo Reef for the West Australian Tourism Commission. The shot list we were given requested scenes of our underwater model Yasmine swimming with Manta Rays, Whale Sharks, Turtles, Giant Sand Rays, Cuttlefish, Baitfish Schools, Coral, Reef Fish and whatever we could find.

Read the full news item and view production photos here →

New Website Launched pic #

June 6, 2005 is an online commentary based climate awareness weblog. Climate scientists regularly contribute articles offering detailed responses and often clarification on global climate related news stories.

Visit the RealClimate website →


Journey to Antarctica

April 21, 2005

Antarctica - a huge, remote, pristine, mysterious, frozen wilderness continent, even today quite inaccessable to humans except for the few who dare and are lucky enough to venture there. A place that challenges a nature photographers imagination.

Only during a few short summer months is it possible to briefly access its outer edges by ship before a long winter with howling gales and blizzards closes in once again. David, with Filmmaker Toni Davis, secured rotating berths on Linblad Cruises SS Endeavour.

Altogether 5 voyages to the south were undertaken by David, Lucy, Toni and ProCams Ian Bates along with Richard Todd of Aquarius Productions.

Read the full news item and view sample imagery here →

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Sea Temperature Monitoring Program Forecasts Potential for Coral Bleaching

December 13, 2004

Water temperatures and current patterns in the Coral Sea and the western Pacific are approaching those that have preceded coral-bleaching events in the past.

Dr Ray Berkelmans, who coordinates the monitoring of 50 sites on the Great Barrier Reef said, "The Equatorial temperatures are unusually warm for this time of year. We're also seeing those westerly wind bursts and a slowing down of the south equatorial current over the past few months. If these conditions continue through December we'll be very concerned..."

Original Press Release issued by Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)

Micro footage shot on using a HD Micro Lense mounted on a motion control rig #

Micro Footage filmed on Heron Island

December 10, 2004

In 2004 David Hannan acquired an HD Probe lens from Innovision Optics allowing him to capture extreme close up images.

In December, David and Lucy relocated to Heron Island on Australia's Great Barrier Reef for 3 weeks to document the annual coral spawning event.

Read the full news item and view micro footage stills examples here →

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People Power and Science Deliver Right Formula for Ningaloo

November 27, 2004

The West Australian Government has placed 34% of Ningaloo Reef in sanctuary zones while allowing for recreational fishing in two thirds of the marine park.

"This decision will put Ningaloo up there with the Great Barrier Reef
as one of the best managed coral reef ecosystems in the world" said AIMS' Dr Terry Done.

To view the press release issued by the Save-Ningaloo Campaign visit

Original Press Release issued by Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)

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Researchers Link Nutrient Runoff with Crown-of-Thorns Starfish Infestations

March 18, 2004

A team of marine researchers has produced a study that shows that an increase in nutrient run-off has led to higher levels of food for starfish larvae. A computer model predicts more frequent outbreaks, consistent with observations on the Great Barrier Reef.

The TV Documentary COTS - The Monster from the Shallows, produced by David Hannan and Gulliver Media, follows this story.

Original Press Release issued by Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)


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