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Grand Bahama: Reef & Wrecks

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As well as our exciting shark dives that you can read about in our previous two posts about Grand Bahama, there are plenty of colourful reef dives, as well as some great wrecks to explore.  We got to fit in three reef dives and two wreck dives on our underwater tour of the island. The reef systems here vary between patchy bommies, creating bursts of colour coming up from the sandy sea bed, and finger-shaped reef systems, with gullies between each finger. Plenty of hard and soft corals, anemones and sponges fill any space available and a variety of reef fish make this their home.

We dived Picasso’s Gallery, Reef Caribe, Theo’s Wreck and the Papa Doc wreck with Reef Oasis Dive Club, and also Plate Reef with UNEXSO.  The reefs were teaming with life, both big and small, and we were treated to tiny Flamingo Tongue Snails, as well as Hawksbill Turtles and Caribbean Reef Sharks.

Theo’s wreck is a signature dive on Grand Bahama, and in fact was one of the first dives we did when working on Grand Bahama some 15 years previously. It lies at 30m on a sandy bottom and is a large wreck that you can swim through and around quite easily on a dive. Alas, we had an unusual ripping current on our dive on this trip, making photography nearly impossible, and in the end, it forced us to finish the dive early and head back to the boat. Even on our disrupted dive, we managed to enjoy a brief glimpse of dozens of Horse-Eyed Jacks swimming alongside us as we ascended. Papa Doc wreck is a more relaxed dive on a much smaller wreck. Here, we had plenty of time to explore, enjoy some close encounters with a curious shark and visit the reef close by, all in a single dive.

There are plenty of great dives in Grand Bahama, and we were very lucky to include the reefs, wrecks and shark dives in our itinerary. Before we moved on from Grand Bahama, we had a dry day before flying to fill. Find out what we got up to in our next post.

For more information about diving Grand Bahama:

www.bahamas.com

www.reefoasisdiveclub.com

www.unexso.com


Images & Text by Nick and Caroline Robertson-Brown: www.frogfishphotography.com

Nick and Caroline (Frogfish Photography) are a married couple of conservation driven underwater photo-journalists and authors. Both have honours degrees from Manchester University, in Environmental Biology and Biology respectively, with Nick being a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society, a former high school science teacher with a DipEd in Teaching Studies. Caroline has an MSc in Animal Behaviour specializing in Caribbean Ecology. They are multiple award-winning photographers and along with 4 published books, feature regularly in the diving, wildlife and international press They are the Underwater Photography and Deputy Editors at Scubaverse and Dive Travel Adventures. Winners of the Caribbean Tourism Organization Photo-journalist of the Year for a feature on Shark Diving in The Bahamas, and they have been placed in every year they have entered. Nick and Caroline regularly use their free time to visit schools, both in the UK and on their travels, to discuss the important issues of marine conservation, sharks and plastic pollution. They are ambassadors for Sharks4Kids and founders of SeaStraw. They are supported by Mares, Paralenz, Nauticam and Olympus. To find out more visit www.frogfishphotography.com

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Photo Gallery: Dive Fest Barbados

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In our Gallery feature, we let the photos tell the story… Each Gallery showcases a selection of outstanding images on a chosen theme, taken by our Underwater Photography Editor Nick and Deputy Editor Caroline of Frogfish Photography. This time they reflect on their visits to the Caribbean Island of Barbados for the annual Dive Fest celebrations.


Dive Fest Barbados is a week of celebrating the marine life, diving and snorkeling this idyllic island has to offer. There are activities organised each day for all those that attend that include wreck diving, marine conservation, learning to dive, snorkeling and one an unusual dive for us – riding a submarine to the bottom of the Caribbean Sea! Dive Fest Barbados allows divers to get the very best out of a trip here, with plenty of diving, but also to sample the unique atmosphere, mouth-watering food and drink, stunning scenery and beautiful beaches.

For more images from Barbados and around the world, visit the Frogfish Photography website by clicking here.

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Marine Life & Conservation

Video Series: The CCMI Reef Lectures – Part 4 (Watch Video)

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Introduced by Jeff Goodman

Never before since human beings have had major influence over our earths climate and environments, have we come to so close to the brink of global disaster for our seas and marine life. We need to act now if we are not going to crash headlong into irreversible scenarios.

A good start to this is understanding how the marine environment works and what it means to our own continued survival. We can only do this by listening and talking to those with the experience and knowledge to guide us in the right direction.

CCMI (Central Caribbean Marine Institute) are hosting an annual Reef Lecture series that is open to the general public and Scubaverse will be sharing those lectures over the coming months.


Part 4: Stop Whining! Life as an Ocean Ambassador; Ellen Cuylaerts

Ellen Cuylaerts shares her insights on how to act, practice what you preach and use your voice to contribute to constructive change. Ellen is a wildlife and underwater photographer and chooses to take images of subjects that are hard to encounter like harp seal pups, polar bears, orcas, beluga whales and sharks, to name a few. By telling the stories about their environment and the challenges they face, she raises awareness about the effect of climate change on arctic species, the cruel act of shark finning and keeping marine mammals in captivity.

During this seminar, Ellen will take you on a virtual trip and show you the stories behind the shots: how to get there, how to prepare, how to create the most chances to come home with a shot, and how to never give up!

Ellen Cuylaerts is an ocean advocate, underwater & wildlife photographer, explorer, and public speaker.


For more information about the CCMI click here.

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Sharks Bay Umbi Diving Village is a Bedouin-owned resort with stunning views and a lovely private beach. It is ideal for divers as everything is onsite including the resort's jetty, dive centre and house reef. The warm hospitality makes for a diving holiday like no other. There is an excellent seafood restaurent and beach bar onsite, and with the enormous diversity of the Sharm El Sheikh dive sites and the surrounding areas of the South Sinai, there really is something for every level of diver to enjoy.

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