The Right Blue: Perennial Favorites

by B. N. Sullivan

It's always interesting to study traffic reports for The Right Blue to see which articles and photos earn the most attention -- not just when we first post them, but over time.  There have been some we just knew would be winners, while other winners of the blog post popularity contest have been complete surprises.

fire coral
In the previous post we reviewed which articles published in 2009 were the most popular, based on number of visits to each.  We'd like to note, however, that the five most popular posts on The Right Blue during the past year were not posted during 2009; they were older articles, dating back as far as August of 2007 (just a month after The Right Blue was launched).

In addition to showcasing our underwater photos, we've always had the goal of sharing what we have learned about the ocean and its inhabitants with readers of The Right Blue.  Knowing that there is a lot of junk information out there on the Web, I admit I am more than a little bit obsessive about presenting factually correct information, especially when I write about marine life.  Some of our 'creature features' are time consuming to prepare, but the reward is that information-heavy articles on The Right Blue almost always end up on the first page of search engine results, and remain there.  It's a nice indicator that what we produce is of value, and also has staying power.

With that said, here are the five posts on The Right Blue that were viewed most often during 2009:
  1. Fire Coral: Look, but do not touch, posted in November of 2007
  2. The Cave Where Turtles Die , posted in June of 2008
  3. Bubble Coral Plus, posted in May of 2008
  4. Dotted Sea Slug from the Mediterranean, posted in October of 2008
  5. Why is the sea blue?, posted in August of 2007
About the photo: I photographed this colony of fire coral (Millepora dichotoma) in the Red Sea at a dive site called 'Jackfish Alley', near the southern tip of the Sinai peninsula.  This fire coral species is very common in the Red Sea.


  1. That coral is so beautiful - it does entice one to want to touch it but I do remember your past post on them though.

    You always have great posts, Bobbie, but I agree, it is always surprising to see what is the most popular.

  2. My favorite article out of those would have to be the cave where turtles die. Very interesting...something I had not yet heard about.

  3. The coral is a beautiful picture.

    It is interesting to see what posts end up being the most popular - it often has to do with how the search engines pick them up and match them to terms. For example, the most popular articles at catsynth were an article mentioning "fourier transform" and our catalogs of endangered wild cats.

    My favorites at The Right Blue would be some of the vivid photos, close-up textures, fish, etc. Those are harder to categorize easily.

  4. Just wanted to say I love this blog and I've added you to my blogroll. Looking forward to keeping up with your posts!

  5. Hi, I just happened upon your blog, and I have to say that it is gorgeous. I love good photography, and underwater photography is one of my favorite areas. I am so happy that you have a Creative Commons license as I would love to use some of your images with my writing on my blog (with proper attribution, of course). Thank you for sharing your adventures.

  6. @ KML - Thanks, Kathy. Glad you remembered not to touch the fire coral. ;-}

    @ scienceguy288 - Diving in that cave certainly was a unique experience for us. Glad you enjoyed the article.

    @ catsynth - You're so right about the images. So far there's no way to categorize photo characteristics in search engine terms, at least not beyond the name of the subject.

    @ Annette - Thank you. We will return the favor.

    @ poietes - Welcome to The Right Blue. Thank you for the kind words. Yes, we allow non-commercial use of our photos on personal Web sites and blogs, so long as the images are not altered (except to resize), and are credited to us, and include a link back to - but please don't "hot link" the photos. ;-}



We welcome your comments and invite your questions. Dialogue is a good thing!

Bobbie & Jerry