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Grab one of the last few places on Dive Worldwide’s new Galapagos Whale Shark expedition

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DIVE WWThere are just a few places left on Dive Worldwide’s brand new and unique cruise to the Galapagos Islands during prime whale shark season under the expert guidance of Jonathan Green, one of the pre-eminent experts on these ancient giants. Developed in partnership with the Galapagos Conservation Trust, this special trip is a one-off departure in August 2016.

If there is one man with whom to discover the whale sharks of the Galapagos Islands, it is Jonathan Green. He founded the Galapagos Whale Shark Project in 2011 and continues to lead research expeditions on an annual basis; identifying, satellite tagging, sampling and studying the whale shark.

During the Galapagos Whale Shark Expedition, divers will spend a week exploring the finest dive sites of the Galapagos from the comfort of the Humboldt Explorer liveaboard.  While exploring the world-class dive sites, guests can listen to talks about Green’s research into the ecology, physiology and behaviour of these enormous, yet gentle ocean creatures.  Experienced divers may be rewarded with eagle and manta ray encounters, as well as witnessing playful dolphins and hundreds of sharks – the highlight however will be diving with whale sharks.

The adventure begins on San Cristobal Island – the first island on which Charles Darwin set foot in September 1835 – where divers step aboard their liveaboard to cross to Isla Lobos for a check out dive. Visit North Seymour Island, with opportunities to both dive and explore the island, observing the large colonies of blue-footed boobies and frigatebirds, as well as sealions and marine iguanas. Wolf and Darwin Islands are next on the agenda – considered to be two of the best diving sites in the world. These islands provide an unparalleled quality and quantity of marine life. The biggest draw for divers however – and the focus for this trip – are the huge whale sharks. These ancient giants are attracted to the area between June to November, when the Humboldt Current is at its strongest. The vessel then moves on to Cousin’s Rock, renowned for its macro life, where divers should keep an eye out for sea horses as well as eagle rays. The last port of call, before returning to San Cristobel, is Santa Cruz to observe giant tortoises in their natural habitat and visit Puerto Ayora, home to the Darwin Research Centre.

Home for the week is the 30-metre long Humboldt Explorer. Designed as one of the fastest, most stable and most comfortable vessels sailing the area, accommodations are befitting the magical nature of the Galapagos. There are eight  double staterooms, all with private facilities, with a maximum of 16 guests on board. Facilities include a spacious air-conditioned salon equipped with a TV/DVD and dining tables, open air salon and a sunning/viewing area on the top deck. The dive deck is well equipped with dive lockers, camera table, rinse tanks and a recharging station.

Dive Worldwide offers the Galapagos Whale Shark Expedition from £3,845 per person sharing (or £5,145 with international flights), including 7 nights’ liveaboard accommodation, all meals (exc. 1 dinner), up to 4 dives per day, expert guide and San Cristobel airport transfers. Flights are extra. Departs 29 August 2016.

For more information visit diveworldwide.com or call +44 (0)1962 302087.

News

Jeff chats to… Underwater Photographer Ellen Cuylaerts (Watch Video)

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In this exclusive Zoom interview, Jeff Goodman, Scubaverse Editor-at-Large, chats to Ellen Cuylaerts about her diving and underwater photographic career.

As an underwater and wildlife photographer, Fellow of The Explorers Club and having a front seat in exploration being part of the Flag and Honours Committee, Ellen is also a Member of the Women Divers Hall of Fame. She travels the world and tries to make the most of every destination and the path that leads her there. Ellen acts as an ocean citizen and believes as divers we should all be ocean ambassadors and lead by example. She is now based in the UK after many years in Grand Cayman.

Find out more about Ellen and her work at www.ellencuylaerts.com


Rather listen to a podcast? Listen to the audio HERE on the new Scubaverse podcast channel at Anchor FM.

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Marine Life & Conservation

Huge thresher shark is the latest of six murals to be painted around the Solent this summer

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The murals celebrate the Solent’s extraordinary marine life – marking National Marine Week.

Secrets of the Solent have commissioned street artist ATM to paint a series of marine-themed artworks at various locations around the Solent this summer. The latest mural to be finished shows a thresher shark on the Langstone Harbour Office. Langstone Harbour is an important area for wildlife as well as a bustling seaside destination for sailing and water sports.

Artist ATM, who is painting all six murals, is well-known for his iconic wildlife street art. This, his second artwork of the series, took three days to paint freehand, from a scaffolding platform. The thresher shark was chosen out of six marine species to be the subject of the artwork by the local community, who were asked to vote via an online form or in person on the Hayling Ferry.

Secrets of the Solent hope the mural will become a landmark in Langstone Harbour and inspire visitors to learn more about this enigmatic oceanic shark. The project, which is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, works to celebrate and raise awareness of Solent’s diverse marine environment.

Aiming to highlight the exotic and unusual creatures found close to our coasts, artist ATM says: “I really enjoyed painting the thresher shark because it’s such an amazing looking animal, with a tail as long as its body. I hope when people see the murals, they will become more aware of what lives under the waves and the importance of protecting the vital habitats within the Solent.”

Dr Tim Ferrero, Senior Marine Biologist at Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust says: “The thresher shark is a wonderful animal that visits our waters every summer. It comes to an area to the east of the Isle of Wight, and this appears to be where the sharks breed and have their young. Not many people know that we have thresher sharks in our region, and so having our mural here on the side of the Langstone Harbour Office building is a fantastic way of raising awareness of this mysterious ocean wanderer. I really hope that people will come away with the knowledge that the Solent, our harbours and our seas are incredibly important for wildlife.”

Rachel Bryan, Project Manager for Secrets of the Solent at Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust comments: “We are really excited to have street artist ATM painting a thresher shark on the side of the Langstone Harbour Office building. We chose this building because of its prominent location right on the entrance to Langstone Harbour so that anyone who’s visiting, whether that’s walkers, cyclists or people coming in and out of the harbour on their jet-skis or sailing boats, will all be able to see our thresher shark. People on the Portsmouth side of the harbour will also be able to see the mural from across the water.”

The thresher shark is a mysterious predator which spends most of its time in oceanic waters. It uses its huge whip-like tail as an incredibly effective tool for hunting its prey. Herding small fish into tight shoals, the shark will lash at them with its tail, stunning several in one hit and making them easier to catch.

Secrets of the Solent hope to work with the species this summer to discover more about its behaviour.

Dr Tim Ferrero explains: “Nobody really knows where thresher sharks go in the ocean. Later this summer we are hoping that we are going to be able to attach a satellite tag to a thresher shark and monitor its progress for an entire year. This will provide really important information that will help us learn so much more about the shark’s annual life cycle.”

The new thresher shark mural is a fantastic start to National Marine Week (24th July – 8th August), which celebrates the unique marine wildlife and habitats we have here in the UK. Over the two weeks, Wildlife Trusts around the country will be running a series of exciting events to celebrate the marine environment. We really hope people will be inspired by our murals and want to learn more about each chosen species.

Events in the Solent include the launch of a new Solent marine film on the 29th July, installation of a new Seabin on the 4th August to reduce marine litter, and citizen science surveys throughout summer.

For more information click here.

Header image: Bret Charman

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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