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The Captain’s Blog: The Ocean Calendar

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Another Blog from Mike Ball Dive Expedition’s Captain Trevor Jackson

“What are the tides Daddy”?

It’s an easy enough question to answer to an adult… but when your three year old son asks from the back seat of the car, surprisingly, things get tricky. No point trying to explain gravity and orbital mechanics in this instance… so I had to think on my feet.

“The tides are like the ocean breathing darling, a big breath in and all the water flows in toward the land, then breathe out and it rushes back out to sea.”

I pondered my cleverness for a second, but my self congratulatory moment was short lived… the six year old chimed in with a doozie.

“Dad how do Minkes know when to come back each year?”.

“Well that’s easy honey, they just check out the ocean calendar”…

“The Ocean Calendar?!! What’s that?”

So now I was in a pickle, my bluff had been called and if I wasn’t going to be branded a fake by the kids… a decent answer was required!

“Well, all the Minkes have to do is watch what’s going on around them and they can tell exactly what time of year it is…The Ocean Calendar is deadly accurate.” 

Now… my kids aren’t stupid, they smelt a giant wharf rat, so they pressed me…

“Give us some examples!”. 

I paused for a second and then realized, this might just be easier than I thought… 

“Well it goes like this… In January , the seas are like glass. In March, the baby turtles hatch. In May, the humpbacks remind the Minkes It’s time to come to Queensland, so in June, they do. Hot on their heels, the Hammerhead Sharks arrive at Osprey, and that reminds the Marlin it’s nearly time for them to show up in September. Then in November the Coral Spawns so that tells the turtles it’s time to go to Raine island just in time to lay their eggs so the babies can hatch in March…you see it’s like mums yearly planner”. 

A quick glance in the rear vision mirror told me I had successfully bluffed my way through this particular inquisition, but when I thought about it later… I realized, the ocean calendar kind of does exist. If I were to look out the wheelhouse windows and see a Minke, I would know it was mid winter… and now that November is upon us… well, Raine Island here we come, the turtles await.


Find the expedition you are looking for at: www.mikeball.com/compare-expeditions

Mike Ball Dive Expeditions operates exciting scuba diving expeditions on custom-built, award-winning liveaboard Spoilsport, to some of the best dive sites on the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Enjoy spectacular biodiversity on the northern Great Barrier Reef including the world famous Cod Hole, or venture out into the remote Coral Sea for exciting big fish action, shark encounters and excellent visibility. Find out more at www.mikeball.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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