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Taking on Truk: The Nippo Maru (Watch Video)



In the last of three videos from their recent trip to Truk Lagoon, Richard and Hayley from Black Manta Photography share this incredible footage of the wreck of the Nippo Maru.

If you’ve ever penetrated a wreck you’ll know at times it’s easy to become disorientated – especially if the wreck laying at the bottom of the ocean is on its side. What feels like ascending to the surface and seeing your depth gauge reduce, can actually mean heading down a corridor to find there’s no exit.

Fortunately this isn’t the case with the Nippo Maru as she sits with only a 20 degree list to her port side, although in all honesty, when we were in the bridge with open widows all around us to view the engine telegraph, that very slight tilt did provide a slight sense of drunkenness. You’re level in the water and it feels like the rusting metal underneath you is too – but it isn’t, and you find yourself swimming at an angle to compensate (or was it just me??)

Built in 1936, the Nippo Maru served life as a cargo ship initially transporting bananas from Taiwan until she was requisitioned by the Japanese Navy in August of 1941 and used as a water carrier.

The Nippo Maru had only been in Truk Lagoon for 7 days when the Allied Forces attacked during ‘Operation Hailstone’. She was hit with three 500lb bombs around the stern area, and came to rest in 44-50m of water, so not one for the recreational single tanks divers!

Despite her 74 years at the bottom of the lagoon, she still has a number of treasure to be discovered from wheelchairs, hospital beds and beer bottles right through to the 3-man Japanese Type 95 Ha-Go light tank weighing in at 10 tons still found on the port side of her deck.

There are plenty of artillery shells, and boxes of small arms ammunitions that litter the holds, along with hemispherical beach mines, but it’s the poignant reminder of the devastation that war brings with the well laid out gas masks – someone at some point would have worn that to cover their face. Quite hard hitting when you see with your own eyes.

Out on the deck at around 30m are a plethora of 47mm field guns. These anti tank guns had a reported muzzle velocity of 860m/sec (2700 ft/sec) and an incredible range of 6,900m… Now that is serious fire power!

Because of her depth this is more suited to the technical divers out there, and racking up double digits of deco time will be a necessity, however this is a beautiful wreck with so much to offer. This literally is Truk Lagoon at it’s very best!

For more from Richard and Hayley visit

Richard Stevens is a keen underwater videographer and half of the team at Black Manta Photography with his partner Hayley. He is a qualified TEC50 and sidemount diver who has been diving for nearly 15 years with hundreds of dives in varied locations around the world. A keen marine conservationist, with a passion for large pelagic marine animals, Richard has studied marine biology and spent time studying the ecology of sharks. Richard also has a huge ‘lust for rust’ and a burning desire to delve into the world of cave diving. Armed with his camera, his aim is to inspire others to witness the marvels in our beautiful oceans for themselves.

Marine Life & Conservation

Jeff chats to… Andrea Marshall of the Marine Megafauna Foundation (Watch Video)



To mark International Women’s Day 2021, Scubaverse is sharing a series of videos that shine a light on some of the amazing women working in the world of scuba diving and marine conservation.

In this exclusive Zoom interview, Jeff Goodman, Scubaverse Editor-at-Large, chats to Andrea Marshall, co-founder, board member and principal scientist for the Marine Megafauna Foundation, about marine conservation and her work with Manta Rays.

Andrea is a passionate conservation biologist directing an experienced global team of Manta Ray researchers. She is a professional underwater photographer, technical diver and ocean explorer. A seasoned public speaker, educator and ocean ambassador, with on-camera experience. Andrea is also owner of Ray of Hope expeditions, an adventure- science travel company.

Find out more at

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 Blogs

Mermaid Minute #1: Meet Mermaid Linden (Watch Video)



In this new series on we will be sharing Linden Wolbert’s video series ‘Mermaid Minute’.

The “Mermaid Minute” is an ocean educational web series for children.  Each action-packed episode explores one subject, creature or habitat about our oceans for 60 seconds.

Professional Mermaid Linden Wolbert is a real mermaid whose passion is educating children about the wonders of our oceans, swimming safety and ocean conservation as well as exploration and inspiring our world’s youngest ocean ambassadors.

Do you LOVE MERMAIDS? This is Episode #1 of the Mermaid Minute, the only ocean education web series hosted by a mermaid! Mermaid Linden created this for kids and anyone who LOVES OUR OCEANS!

See and learn more about Mermaid Linden here:

Follow Mermaid Linden here:​​

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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

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