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Manta-tastic Socorro

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We sailed over night from San Benedicto to Socorro, and once again woke up to see flat calm seas and only a single other boat for company. Today we are diving Cabo Pearce, a series of volcanic pinnacles that descend deeper as you move away from the leeward side of the island. The topography is astonishing and worth diving, regardless of the marine life. But as we sat down for our briefing on the top deck of Belle Amie, in the sunshine, there was talk of sharks and mantas that are always a possibility at these incredible islands.

Our first dive was at 7:15am and Team Shark, as our dive group is known (those that are happy to dive without a divemaster guiding), always goes in first. There are eight of us in the group and we hop onto a RIB to take us in close to our descent spot. As we descend the seascape is breath-taking. Whitetip sharks glide across the sea bed every few minutes and there are small shoals of fish surrounding each rock. Huge moray eels poke their heads from almost all the crevices in this rocky sub terrain world. Everyone is looking out into the blue, hoping for one of the big animals we are here to see. We are lucky – some of our group see a huge dolphin that comes in just close enough for us to get a good look without getting a great shot! Others encounter a huge Chevron Manta, who comes to look at each diver in the group, and enjoy their bubbles. All too soon, it is time to head back up. But, we still have three more dives here today…

Another breakfast and it is time for our second dive of the day. Same dive site, as we will dive this all day, but each time is different. On dives two and three (after lunch) it is all about the mantas. We see both the Chevron and Black colour morphs on these dives. These mantas seem to love bubbles and hover over divers. If you exhale a few times, you might even see them quiver their whole bodies, and it is hard not to equate this with some form of pleasure. Their wing spans are in the region of 6 or 7 meters and they move slowly enough to get a good look, get a photo or two and also to appreciate the magical moment.

Last dive of the day done now, and another incredible close-up encounter with an inquisitive manta tops off a great first day diving Socorro. It has been Manta-tastic! What will tomorrow bring?

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For more from Nick and Caroline, visit 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 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

Marine Life & Conservation

Jeff chats to… Louis Hagger, second place winner of the See You at the Sea Festival Film Competition (Watch Video)

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In this exclusive Zoom interview, Jeff Goodman, Scubaverse Editor-at-large, chats to Louis Hagger, second place winner of the See You at the Sea Festival Film Competition.The See you at the Sea Festival was an online film festival created by young people, for young people.

Louis’ film – Uncovering Cornwall’s Little Known Oceans – can be seen here:

Third in a series of six videos about the competition. Watch the first video HERE with Jenn Sandiford – Youth Engagement Officer with the Your Shore Beach Rangers Project and the Cornwall Wildlife Trust – to find out more about the Competition. Each day this week we will be sharing one video in which Jeff talks with the young contestants about their films and what inspired them.


For more information please visit:

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DAN launches 2021 webinar series

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Divers Alert Network (DAN) has launched a new series of live monthly webinars on its YouTube channel, DAN TV.

Throughout 2021, experts from DAN’s Research, Risk Mitigation, and Medical Services teams will give presentations on topics relevant to divers, dive pros and dive business owners as we look beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and resume diving and traveling.

The 2021 series will begin this Thursday, January 21, at 7:00 p.m. EST, with a webinar by DAN Director of Risk Mitigation Francois Burman titled Emergency Planning: Who Is Responsible for Your Safety? The presentation will cover various mishaps that can occur during diving and travel as well as tips for anticipating, preparing for and successfully managing them.

Future webinars in the series will cover topics including fill station safety, ear barotrauma, DAN research updates, the latest information about COVID-19 and diving, and more. Attendees can look forward to lively 30- to 45-minute presentations followed by questions and discussion.

The webinars will be held on the third Thursday of each month. Keep an eye on the Events page of DAN.org

For more information about upcoming webinars follow DAN on: 

Recorded presentations will remain on DAN’s YouTube Channel.

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Competitions

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Jump on board the latest addition to the Emperor fleet and enjoy diving the famous sites of the Red Sea with this fantastic special offer. This itinerary takes in the wonderful South & St Johns from 26 February – 05 March 2021.  

Subject to availability – limited flight seats at this price so don't delay!

Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk to book your spot!

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