In southern New England’s coastal waters, at depths of 20’ to 80’, there are still some kelp beds richly supporting a diversity of life. Today, because of a history of widespread bottom trawling and progressive climate change, some areas that once flourished as kelp habitats are devoid of the long strands that once provided hiding places and hunting grounds. Despite this reality, many species tenaciously hang on and seemingly prosper in what seems to be a cyclic pattern of species domination and recession, ebb and flow, feast or famine.
Here, I have depicted a black sea bass emerging from the shadows of the kelp fronds to take a longing look at a potential calamari meal. At the same moment, the lone squid has detected the potential danger and is ready to jet off in a cloud of black ink if necessary. Hard to say who will blink first in this game of mutual awareness.