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Deakin University researchers found a packed house waiting for them when they provided a rare opportunity for visitors to Warrnambool's Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum to see the abundant marine life beneath the southern Ocean - and all without getting wet!
On January 10th at Flagstaff Hill, which overlooks Lady Bay and the deep blue of the southern Ocean waters beyond, the researchers showed off the highlights of research projects that have involved underwater filming from remotely controlled cameras, some baited to attract the denizens of the deep.
"We had a full house," said Deakin's Dr Daniel Ierodiaconou, "in fact they had to turn people away."
That the event was so popular is not surprising.
According to Dr Ierodiaconou, the marine life off the south west Victorian coast is just as spectacular as the Great Barrier Reef .
"Ninety per cent of the marine plant life in southern Australia is found nowhere else in the world," he said.
"We have been using remotely operated vehicles and animal-borne systems to capture some amazing footage."
This included attaching cameras to seals.
As well as a host of marine life, the researchers also obtained the first video footage of the City of Rayville, the first American ship sunk in World War II. It struck mines laid by German vessels off Cape Otway while carrying a shipment of iron ore from Port Pirie.
Marine and aquatic sciences at Warrnambool are ranked as among the best in the world.
To find out more about studying marine and freshwater science at Deakin, click here:
Click on the video link below to see some of the brilliant footage on show at Flagstaff Hill.
In addition to world class research, in 2012 Deakin has the following courses open for enrolments in Warrnambool: