January 2017
For ocean lovers, divers, and 
  MilaBooks Logo
Cruising With a Hawksbill -- John Hand Photo, Turks & Caicos
Welcome to the first Sea-gram of 2017  from  .

Fellow diver John Hand contributed this month's headline photo, diving in Turks & Caicos. In John's words:
"On almost every dive we encountered a turtle, and we discovered this one gnawing on some coral as the dive began. He was directly beneath our boat and I just waited until he finished. I swam beside him and shot in an upward manner (as Professor Mila instructed) as he went on his merry way.
The photo was taken at approximately 45-50 feet depth."
Thanks for sharing, John; great photo!

January was a most interesting month. TV Host Bonnie D. Graham invited me back on her show, Something To Talk About. Naturally we talked about Harry Hawksbill Helps His Friends, among other things (video starts at about 30 sec).
 Paul Mila, From Thriller Novelist to Children's Book Author
Paul Mila, From Thriller Novelist to Children's Book Author

This month I thought I'd share a unique wreck dive experience our dive group enjoyed in Cozumel.  
Read about  An Action-Packed Dive!

Some people say that one of the most dangerous jobs in the world is being a window washer on a NYC skyscraper. Well, diver David Robertson caught a cleaner shrimp that could compete for that title in our Story Behind the Photo section.

If you have a photo with an interesting story or would like to share a good dive yarn, let me know at and I'll be happy to include your story in a future issue.
If you know someone who would enjoy reading Sea-gram, perhaps a dive buddy in need of an overdue "dive fix," please forward Sea-gram using the link at the end of the newsletter.
To view past Sea-grams click our ARCHIVE link below:

I hope you enjoy Sea-gram !
Paul J. Mila
 An Action-Packed Dive!
                                                        By Paul Mila, Carle Place, NY
There are dives and then there are those dives that you will never forget. Last December divemaster Alison decided our group would dive the wreck of the C-53, an old minesweeper resting at 80 feet near Chankanaab Reef, in Cozumel, Mexico. 

Our hardy band of divers, Anne, Peggy, Paul, another Peggy, Danny, Brittany, and Debbie, descended on the line down to the wreck.

Then we penetrated the sponge-encrusted hulk . . .

. . .  and visited the shiny silversides that live inside.

Danny, Ann & Peggy posed for a photo op inside the wheelhouse.

When we came out, Mexican Navy divers doing a training dive suddenly descended on us at the bow, just as a submarine went cruising by. You don't get more action that that on a single dive!

Photo Equipment:
SeaLife DC 1400 camera with digital strobe and fish-eye lens.
 Story Behind the Photo . . .
                "A Most Dangerous Job"
                    By David Robertson, AKA DOTS, Reno Nevada
This cleaner shrimp must be the aquatic version of "The Cockeyed Optimist," confident that this green moray will let him swim away after performing an underwater flossing. David's story is below.
A Most Dangerous Job - David Robertson Photo, Cozumel, Mexico

"We were diving Cedral Wall, in Cozumel. I just went to shoot a moray eel and saw the cleaner shrimp working his way toward the eel's mouth. So I waited until the cleaner shrimp got close to the mouth and started shooting away. One shot that I did not get was the eel with the cleaner shrimp completely inside his mouth and the mouth closed. I missed that one because my flash was recharging.
It was an amazing thing to witness!  I told Alison that I have never shot a six-foot moray eel before using a macro lens!  Best, DOTS"

Editor's Note:
DOTS is David's Cozumel persona: David Of The Shallows.

David's Equipment: 
Sea and Sea camera with YS-55 strobe 
is your home for exciting dive adventure novels
and YouTube videos featuring various ocean creatures.
My latest venture is a children's book, Harry Hawksbill Helps His Friends, published by Best Publishing Company.
It's a fun story and a great gift for those 4-8-year-old pre-divers.
Click on the book cover for ordering information:
MilaBooks Logo
Click the reading dolphin and swim into our website
Thanks for visiting, and we'll see you next month!
Paul J. Mila 
  Paul in Cozumel
75 Titus Avenue
Carle Place, New York 11514
To forward Sea-gram to a friend, please click the "Forward email" link below.

Special Feature: 

                           An Action-Packed Dive

Story Behind the Photo:

                            "A Most Dangerous Job"

                  (Stories, lower left column)  
Quick Links
Updates & Miscellaneous Features
The Dolphins Are Dancing!
Chisa Hidaka from The Dolphin Dance Project just let us know about their updated website. Have a look and go dancing:
Want to learn more about dolphins? 
Check out the Dolphin Dance Project interactive Q&A:

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Europe's First 
Underwater Museum
Sea-gram reader Martha Weisberg sent us this story about a new underwater museum, which just opened beneath Spanish waters.

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Book Update
Last month we told you about Lynn Markham's great children's book,   
Fish Hotel. 
As you can see below, my grandson Max was totally absorbed in the story and the great illustrations.   
We found out how you can order a copy.

Click on the link to order a copy:

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Freshwater Corner
Underwater photographer & author Nancy Washburne sent us another video from Lake Michigan, this time snorkeling with a drum fish.
Fresh water snorkeling with a drum fish
Fresh water snorkeling with a drum fish

Notice how different the Michigan fresh water drum, above, is from its salty Cozumel drum cousin:

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Seal-Cam from Seal Island
Sea-gram fan Paul Stessel sent us this fascinating link to the Seal Island National Wildlife Refuge, 18 miles south of Rockland, Maine, where you can view live seal action on their Seal-cam. Hopefully the link is up today. Take a look:
Live Seal-Cam

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 Sea Shepherd Update

Sea Shepherd Conservation Organization is protecting sea turtles, the rare vaquita porpoise, whales, and a host of other endangered species.
Check out their website for their latest wide-ranging initiatives:

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 A Great Newsletter !
If you don't subscribe to 
Ben Davison's 
Undercurrent Magazine,  you should. 
It is Informative and always full of good tips on travel, dive equipment and more.
Check it out:
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Check out my Cozumel Mexico beachfront condo on VRBO:
Condo Details
Here is the view from the condo:
Morning at the Residencias Reef Beachfront Condo
Morning at the Residencias Reef Beachfront Condo

  Fulvio and Sandra manage my
  Little Slice of Paradise.

For other properties that Fulvio manages visit his web site:
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New York Diving 
Scuba Network of Long Island
Sales, Service, Basic and Advanced Dive Instruction
Local Diving & Exotic Dive Trips

For the best scuba experience in the New York area, contact

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For the best in Cozumel diving, 
check out dive operator Alison Dennis:
Looking for your own Slice of Paradise ?
Contact Nancy Edwards at Cozumel Living: 
Jaime Ramirez, at:
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Post a link to your web site on Sea-gram!
 for details.
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