Skip to main content

Episode 1201: Florida's Blue Holes: Oases in the Sea

Reports of large aggregations of fish in the Gulf of Mexico led divers to discover deep holes opening down into the seafloor. These submerged sinkholes and springs, more commonly called blue holes, attract a diversity of marine life in an otherwise ocean desert. A group of scientists and technical divers collaborate to better understand these ecological oases in the sea. The experts begin by exploring Amberjack Hole – a sinkhole located 20 miles off the coast of Sarasota, Florida, that opens at 115 feet below the surface and extends down to over 350 feet.

Do these blue holes connect to mainland Florida? What organisms are found at the bottom of the hole? What effects do these holes have on the surrounding Gulf of Mexico? Join scientists as they search for answers and explore these never before studied environments.


Meet the experts featured in this episode.

Special Thanks:

Hotel Ranola
118 Indian Place, #6
Sarasota, Florida 34236
(941) 951-0111


Dive Outpost
20148 180th St.
Live Oak, FL 32060
(386) 776-1449

Image Credits

Changing Seas would like to thank the following individuals and institutions who kindly allowed their footage, images and other media to be used in this production:

Jim Culter
Mote Marine Laboratory

Drew Dye

Andrew Etheridge

Sergio Figuera

AJ Gonzales

Emily Hall, Ph.D.
Mote Marine Laboratory

NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/
Genna Duberstein

NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Space Telescope Science Institute



Kim B. Ritchie, Ph.D.

Brad Tanner
Mote Marine Laboratory

Marty Watson

Special Thanks:


Stephannie Kettle
Mote Marine Laboratory

Drew Dye

Jimmy Gadomski

Albert C. Hine, Ph.D.

Funding for this episode of Changing Seas was provided by: