Connect with us
background

News

Love Frogfish? Then you will love Atmosphere!

Published

on

Love Frogfish? Yes? Then you are going to love Atmosphere Resort & Spa! Located in Dauin, on the island of Negros Oriental near Dumaguete, in The Philippines, this is frogfish heaven. Whether you are diving the famous Apo Island, with its wonderful coral reef (more on this another time) or exploring the local reefs and muck dives, there are frogfish wherever you look. This is the capital of the world for Frogfish.

We love frogfish so much, we named our company after them. So, it was with some excitement that we headed to Atmosphere, as not only did we know that we would be spending lots of time with our favourite weird fish, but Atmosphere has another treat for all frogfish fans – a resident expert – Daniel Geary (or Dr Frogfish)!

Daniel wrote the PADI Frogfish Specialist Course and teaches it exclusively at the resort. The course starts with a two hour classroom session. Daniel goes into detail about the history of frogfish, such as the first ever drawings/encounters written in history, working our way up to the present and highlighting some of the important scientists that furthered our knowledge of frogfish.

He talks about general frogfish biology on subjects such as body morphology, predation, reproduction, movement, and distribution. The final topic is the identification segment, and, according to Daniel, that is the most important part of the course. He goes through a few main species in heavy detail, then talks about some of the rare species in moderate detail, touching on the super rare species just to show they exist and to see cool photos.

The course is centred around Indo-Pacific frogfish, but he can add frogfish from anywhere to tailor it to the diver taking the course. Participants then go for two dives, with the dive site chosen depending on the abundance of frogfish at that time of the year.

Daniel says: ” Normally we see between 2 and 5 species. We can expect anywhere from 1 to 30 frogfish during a course. My record is 36. During the dives themselves, our main objective is to locate the frogfish. We then measure them, take notes of habitat and any behaviour observed, and if brave, the students can guess identification underwater using hand signals. I bring my camera, and students are encouraged to bring theirs, so that we can properly identify the frogfish after the dive.”

After the second dive, the students have a debriefing session where they go through the photos. As a team, with the students leading, we identify each frogfish we spotted and look at their behaviour as well. The objective is for the students to identify the frogfish with minimal help. After the course, they get a free t-shirt, PADI certification, and a pdf file of Daniel’s custom Frogfish of the Visayas ID Guide.

Alas, there was not enough time on our trip for us to complete the Frogfish Specialist Course, but we did attend one of Daniel’s talks on his favourite subject of Frogfish, which are a popular evening event. We got to hear first-hand about his passion for frogfish, see some of his impressive images and learn plenty more about them, whilst sipping on a cool beer, after a great day of diving.

The diving was a real treat, and whilst we took in far more than just frogfish on this trip (more about this soon) it was amazing just how many different species and individual frogfish we encountered, from the miniscule ones, barely bigger than a grain of sand, to the very large ones camouflaged against sponges. Frogfish are incredible fish, with the ability to blend in to match their surroundings and then strike at their prey with ferocious speed. They use a special appendage to “fish” for their prey, dangling a lure out in front of their mouths. They tend to walk along the seabed and look clumsy when trying to move from one place to another. Be careful – they can become an obsession!

For more information please follow the links below:

Atmosphere Resorts & Spa

The Official UK Travel Guide for The Philippines


Underwater Photography Equipment Used:

  • Olympus OMD EM-1 MKII with 60mm lens
  • Nauticam housing
  • INON Z-240 strobes

and

  • Nikon D800 with 105mm lens
  • Nauticam housing
  • INON Z-240 strobes

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 Dive Ambassadors for The Islands of The Bahamas and are supported by Mares, Paralenz, Nauticam and Olympus. To find out more visit www.frogfishphotography.com

News

Breaking News: Captain charged in Conception boat fire tragedy

Published

on

According to reports in the international press today, it has been announced that the Captain of the dive boat Conception, which was completely destroyed by fire last year, resulting in the tragic loss of 34 passengers and crew, has been charged with 34 counts of seaman’s manslaughter. 

The Captain Jerry Nehl Boylan was among five crew members to escape the blaze on board Conception, a dive boat operated by Truth Aquatics, which took place in the early hours of 2 September 2019 whilst the boat was moored offshore, close to Santa Cruz Island off the coast of California.

The BBC reports that Mr Boylan has not publicly commented on the charges, and is expected to surrender to the authorities at a later date. According to the BBC, each charge of seaman’s manslaughter carries up to 10 years in federal prison.

Continue Reading

News

Crossover to NAUI for FREE!

Published

on

As a boost to help the diving industry, NAUI are still offering a FREE Instructor cross-over course together with five free certifications to all Instructors. This can include Open Water, Advance, Rescue, Nitrox and various other specialities and can be mixed and matched so all five do not necessarily need to be for the same certification.

NAUI have also frozen the membership fees for 2021 for instructors crossing over or restarting.

NAUI’s Southern UK Rep Simon Lodge says: “Throughout this year, the diving industry has severely suffered so as a result, to help kickstart the diving industry NAUI will not be charging membership fees 2020/2021 to any new instructors.” 

Founded in 1960, NAUI Worldwide is one of the scuba industry’s largest not-for-profit agencies whose purpose is to enable people to enjoy underwater activities as safely as possible by providing the highest quality practical education, and to actively promote the preservation and protection of the world’s underwater environments. As a pioneer in diving education, NAUI has developed many of the programs and concepts accepted throughout the diving industry. NAUI: A Higher Standard!

For more details please contact Simon Lodge (Southern UK Rep) on simon@europe.naui.org or Craig Warner (Northern UK Rep) on cwarner@europe.naui.org.

Continue Reading

E-Newsletter Sign up!

Competitions

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.

More Less

Instagram Feed

Facebook Feed

Facebook Pagelike Widget

Popular