Thursday, 13 November 2008

NAUI Worldwide Just Dive Photo Contest

The Results Of The 2008 Just Dive Photo Contest Are In..

The "Just Dive” photo contest for 2008 just concluded and was a huge success. The overwhelming and enthusiastic response exceeded our wildest expectations. Thanks to all that participated for sharing your amazing photos and incredible stories that exemplify the "Just Dive" lifestyle. Your diving photos about exploration, friendships, memories and experiences were incredible, and great examples of good times "land lubbers" will never know! Judging was difficult due to the number of amazing photos that we received. If you didn't win this one, look for the 2009 "Just Dive" Photo Contest.

NAUI also thanks the following diving companies for their generous prize donations and for their support of the "Just Dive" lifestyle: Blackbeard's Cruises, Stuart's Cove, DAN, Sea & Sea and TUSA. And the winners are...

Best Overall Photo Capturing "The Just Dive Lifestyle"

Sweet Dreams By Dan Benson

Best Aquatic Life

Dolphin In Water By Pam Wood

Best Sense Of Humor

Never Leave A Buddy Behind By Candace Miller Stimpson

Best Diver Shot

Diver And Napolian By Hilliard Dean

Best Dive Spot

Kauai Splash By Deb Greenhalgh

Honorable Mention

This Is How We Just Dive By Mark Wellerstein

2008 Just Dive Photo Contest Prize List

  • Blackbeards Cruises - Week Long Trip For One

  • Stuarts Cove - 3 Days x 2-Tank Dive Package For Two

  • TUSA Gift Boxes With Mask/Fins/Snorkel

  • Sea & Sea DX860G Digital Camera and Housing

  • DAN Participation Gifts

  • Black Beard

    Stuarts Cove


    Sea and Sea
    NAUI Worldwide Just Dive Photo Contest

    Official Call For Entries: 2009 DivePhotoGuide & Wetpixel Competitions :: - The Underwater Photo & Video Portal

    Official Call For Entries: 2009 DivePhotoGuide & Wetpixel Competitions
    Author: Jason Heller

    This is an official call for entries for the 2009 international photo and video competitions co-hosted by DivePhotoGuide and Wetpixel.

    Photographers of all levels will help celebrate the beauty, mystery and delicacy of the marine environment as the 4th annual international underwater photography and video competition series hosted by kicks off. The competition has become the “Superbowl” of international underwater imagery competitions, with over $75,000 of world-class prizes, major industry involvement, and the opportunity to have your images showcased to the world as some of the best. Esteemed judges include leading professional underwater photographers, cinematographers and magazine editors from around the world.

    The unique competition series was founded by professional underwater photographers Jason Heller & Eric Cheng and hosted by popular websites and The series is held in association with two leading scuba diving expos on opposite sides of the world, simultaneously - Our World Underwater, now in its 39th year and one of the largest consumer scuba diving expos in the US, and DEEP Indonesia, the first and only scuba diving and watersports expo in Indonesia.

    Due to the overwhelming growth of the competition series, the official competition website has been given an overhaul and relaunched at

    Participants will compete in technical, themed and video categories, to win more than $75,000 in prizes including premium dive travel, underwater photo and video equipment, scuba diving gear and more! Dive packages include trips to some of the top photo destinations in the world. A complete list of sponsors and prizes are listed on the website.

    New this year is a novice category in the Our World Underwater competition, which opens up the competition to a far greater number of scuba divers who are casual underwater photographers.

    Deadline for submissions Jan 15, 2009

    Winners for each respective competition will be announced live on stage at either the Our World Underwater film festival in Chicago (February 20-22, 2009), or at DEEP Indonesia in Jakarta (March 27 – 29, 2009), and will be published by our supporting media partners worldwide. Winning videos will be broadcast via podcast as episodes of the iTunes-featured DiveFilm Podcast Video and DiveFilm High Definition Podcast Video

    As with all events, 15% of entry proceeds will be donated to marine conservation efforts.

    Official Call For Entries: 2009 DivePhotoGuide & Wetpixel Competitions :: - The Underwater Photo & Video Portal

    Wednesday, 12 November 2008

    CORAL E-Current Photo Contest | Coral Reef Alliance

    Dolphin Pair by Doug Richardson
    Dolphin Pair by Doug Richardson

    Enter your favorite coral reef photographs in the CORAL E-Current Photo Contest for a chance to win a copy of Reef—a gorgeous coffee table book featuring beautiful coral reef photographs contributed by Scubazoo photographers.

    Each winning photograph will be featured in the photo edition of E-Current, CORAL's free electronic newsletter. The winning photographer's name will be posted on the CORAL Web site, and the winning photo will be available for download as desktop wallpaper.

    All photos entered will be evaluated by CORAL staff members, who will choose the top three finalists. None of the CORAL staff members are professional photographers nor do they have special knowledge of artistic presentation or composition. Each staff member will select the photos that strike them most for whatever reason. The winning photograph will be chosen from the three finalists by professional underwater photographer and CORAL columnist, Jeff Yonover.

    Reef Book Cover
    Win a copy of Reef by Scubazoo!

    The CORAL E-Current Photo Contest will continue on an ongoing basis, with winning photographs announced in each bimonthly edition of E-Current Photo. The deadline to submit entries is the 15th of the month prior to publication of the bimonthly newsletter. E-Current Photo is published on the first Tuesday of every other month beginning in January 2009.

    How to Enter »

    The Rules »

    CORAL E-Current Photo Contest | Coral Reef Alliance

    Sport Diver Magazine USA Oct 2008 article on on Fiji

    Saturday, 8 November 2008

    SureFire Flashlight for pre- dive set-up?

    I gotta say I never came acrosss these flash lights until a dive guest on a liveaboard gave me one, and it's become a standard part of my dive kit ever since. I don't dive with it... It's for before and after the dive when setting up and packing down!

    SureFire has affirmed that all current SureFire lights should be waterproof to about 33 feet/10 meters but they are by no means dive lights. Some reviews were posted before SureFire made the affirmation that their lights were watertight to 1 atmosphere depth. Any new Surefire lights you purchase now should be considered waterproof to 33 feet/10 meters.

    SureFire Flashlights are powerful, compact, rugged and reliable. They produce optimal beams - no dark holes, rings, hot spots, or shadows. When you own a SureFire flashlight, you own the best.

    SureFire 's advanced technology delivers illumination tools of superior design, materials, ruggedness, reliability, light output, beam quality, and ergonomics. The hardest test of equipment is combat and street duty, and the highest stamp of approval for Sure Fire Weaponlights is their widespread use by personnel operating in harm's way.

    Surefire Special Operations Flashlights were developed for law enforcement and military applications where intensely bright light is used to startle, disorient, and control anyone on the receiving end, and where hard use in tough environments is expected.

    Featuring optically coated and tempered Pyrex lenses and Mil-Spec Type III hard-anodized finishes, these law enforcement flashlights also have an internal shock isolation system to cushion the lamp assembly against impact, plus double O-ring seals for redundant moisture protection. These SureFire flashlights are tough enough to survive the rigors of combat and bright enough to reach far into the night.

    Sure Fire Special Operations Flash Lights are also perfectly suited to extreme outdoors activities and environments. If you're going someplace where you might encounter yawning crevasses, dangerous drop-offs, irritated animals, or swift water - or all of the above - consider taking along a Surefire Special Operations Light.  

    Free Diving in November at Matava

    Free Diving in November

    manta1 web.jpgFREE DIVING!
    Due to a very last minute cancellation of a group of 10 divers, Matava now has a few clear weeks to fill until the end of November.

    Therefore we are offering a KILLER deal for divers out there willing to travel at last minute by offering F~R~E~E D~I~V~I~N~G !

    Yes, totally FREE 2 tank morning dives for every full day you stay at Matava until the end of November!
    Free diving in Fiji
    Dive the wonders of the Great Astrolabe Barrier reef in Kadavu, Fiji and experience pelagics, mantas, sharks and the fabulous hard corals of the 3rd largest barrier reef in the world for the wonderful price of $0!

    Just book any bure and quote promo code "NovFreeDive" to redeem this one off deal at Matava!

    Email RichardEmail RichardThis e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it at Matava now to secure your booking.

    Diving in Fiji

    Tuesday, 4 November 2008

    Scuba dive adventures to Fiji with Wet Cat Scuba

    Fiji is one of the truly under-discovered gems of the Pacific. This archipelago of 300 islands has some of the most beautiful reefs, friendliest people and greatest values for travelers anywhere.

    Foreign currencies remain advantageously exchanged for the Fijian dollar, versus the Euro exchange in Tahiti by comparison.

    Our motto is "Why Hula when you can Bula!" with all-inclusive facilities allowing meals, water toys, and other activities literally included, you can save hundreds $$ by comparison to Hawaii resort stays! Enjoy the hospitality that has not yet seen the results of full commercial development.

    Each island group has its own special allure and your destination specialist can help you choose that perfect spot for your dive vacation or tropical escape.

    Scuba dive adventures to Fiji with Wet Cat Scuba

    Tokoriki Diving, Fiji: Tokoriki Diving: Clams Fight to Stay Alive

    Clams Fight to Stay Alive


    Tourists who dive and snorkel in Fijian reefs are fascinated with the unique giant clam. To them it symbolises how exotic the South Pacific is.

    According to the Fisheries Department: this magnificent creature can live up to 200 years and grow to the size of a bathtub or two metres long if it reaches full maturity. In fact, some islands in the Lau Group still use the shell of this species, tridacna gigas, as babies’ baths.

    Unfortunately, excessive human consumption led to the species’ extinction and endangersed another species, tridacna derasa or smooth clam in the 1960s. It was reintroduced to Fiji from Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in a joint venture between the Fijian and Australian Fisheries Project.

    Last month, the Dive Tropex at Tokoriki Island Resort in the Mamanucas, with the help of the Ministry of Fisheries, began a project aimed at conserving this fascinating yet fragile species. The project, known as the Tokoriki Island Giant Clam Regeneration Project, is a significant step as the giant clams are the first of their species to be reintroduced to Western Fiji after becoming extinct.

    Will Wragg, 28, and Alexandra Garland, 30, dive instructors at Tokoriki, realised the importance of implementing such projects as reefs and pinnacles surrounding the island did not have any more giant clams.

    It takes a giant clam between seven to nine years to reach full sexual maturity but chances of successful reproduction are very slim. In addition to the odds stacked against the giant clam, it suffers heavy predation in its early years.
    Ms Garland said apart from conservation purposes, the project would add another dimension to diving, as the presence of clams in dive sites would make it a more interesting experience for guests.

    The giant clam is not the only species planted around the island. The smooth clam and the tridacna squamosa or fluted clam have also been planted. These clams, totalling up to 104, were supplied by the Fisheries Research Station on Makogai Island in the Lomaiviti Group. A team of marine biologists at the station artificially seed and nurture various species of clams before planting them on Makogai Island’s fringing reefs. To survive the long journey from Makogai to Tokoriki, the clams were wrapped in medical gauze dampened with seawater and placed in sealed heavy-duty bags, which were arranged, in a chilled icebox.

    Upon reaching Tokoriki they were removed from the bags and placed in buckets of sea water before being measured and catalogued. Three officers—Aisake Batibasaga, Peni Drodrolagi and Kolinio Rakaka from the Fisheries Department—along with the two PADI instructors deep dived around various sites near the island to find suitable places planted in deeper waters to plant the clams.

    The clams were carried down to cages with a base of dead coral rubble where they were placed in catalogue order. The baby clams nestled into the coral base and the cages were closed and wired down. The cages protect the clams from predators such as the octopus and the triggerfish. The small clams, which are four to six centimeters long, are planted in one to five metres deep waters as they need a rocky base and a lot of sunlight to grow. The bigger ones are planted in deeper waters measuring seven metres in depth at least.
    Once the clams reach one year of age they will be taken out of their cages and planted on the reef.

    Ms Garland said guardians of the clams will be appointed from the local Fijian population to help protect and conserve all planted clams. The project aims to breed erate the giant clam as a species.

    It focuses on providing the local Fijian population with incentives to initiate similar programmes carried out for research purposes.

    Tokoriki Diving, Fiji: Tokoriki Diving: Clams Fight to Stay Alive

    Sunday, 2 November 2008

    Top 100 Dives of the World

    Top 100 Dives of the World
    Here are the top 100 dive sites as voted for by SCUBA Travel visitors. We asked for your top two dive sites and your comments on those that came close. We compiled the results by hand, with the runners-up coming into play where there was a tie for a position. For links to descriptions of the dives go to
    1. Yongala, Australia
    2. Blue Corner Wall, Palau, Micronesia
    3. Thistlegorm, Egyptian Red Sea
    The Thistlegorm 4. Barracuda Point, Sipadan Island
    5. Shark and Yolanda Reef, Egyptian Red Sea
    6. Navy Pier, Western Australia
    7. Manta Ray Night Dive, Kailua Kona, Hawaii
    8. Elphinstone Reef, Egyptian Red Sea
    9. Great Blue Hole, Belize
    10. Ras Mohammed, Egyptian Red Sea
    11. Richelieu Rock, Thailand
    12. Sha'ab Rumi South, Sudan
    13. Liberty, Bali, Indonesia
    14. Great White Wall, Tavieuni Fiji
    15. Big Brother, Egyptian Red Sea
    16. President Coolidge, Vanuatu
    17. Sodwana bay, South Africa
    18. Blue Hole, Dahab, Egyptian Red Sea
    19. Poor Knights, New Zealand
    20. Bloody bay wall, Little Cayman
    21. Straits of Tiran, Egyptian Red Sea
    22. Osprey Reef, Coral Sea, Australia
    23. Manta reef, Mozambique
    24. Tubbataha, Palawan, Philippines
    25. Cod Hole, Northern Great Barrier Reef
    26. Ulong Channel, Palau
    27. Grand Central Station, Gizo, Solomon Islands
    28. Darwin Island, Galapagos
    29. Fish Rock, Off South West Rocks in NSW, Australia
    30. Similans, Thailand
    31. Wolf Island, Galapogos
    32. Jackson Reef, Egypt
    33. Puerto Galera, Philippines
    34. Mnemba Island, Tanzania
    35. Stingray City, Grand Cayman
    Daedelus 36. Daedelus, Egyptian Red Sea
    37. Protea Banks, South Africa
    38. The Zenobia, Cyprus
    39. Darwin Arch, Galapagos
    40. Barra Reef, Mozambique
    41. St Johns, Egypt
    42. Blue Hole,Gozo, Malta
    43. Cirkewwa, Malta
    44. Pedras Secas, Noronha, Brazil
    45. Holmes Reef, Coral Sea, Australia
    46. Shark Alley, Grand Cayman
    47. Half Moon Wall, Belize
    48. Hin Muang, Thailand
    49. Sipadan Drop Off
    50. Dos Ojos (Los Cenotes), Playa del Carmen, Mexico
    51. Peleliu Express, Palau
    52. The Canyons, Utila, Honduras
    53. Ghiannis D, Egypt
    The Booroo 54. Booroo, Isle of Man
    55. Pixie pinnacle and pixie wall, GBR, Australia
    56. Wreck of the Bahama Mama, New Providence, Bahamas
    57. Canibal Rock, Komodo, Indonesia
    58. Gili air, Indonesia
    59. The Point, Layang - Layang
    60. Rainbow Warrier, New Zealand
    61. Aliwal Shoal, South Africa
    62. Turtle tavern, Sipadan
    63. Los testigos islands, Venezuela
    64. Gordon's Rock, Galapagos
    65. Perpendicular wall, Christmas Island, Australia
    66. Japanese Gardens, Koh Tao, Thailand
    67. The Express, Kuredu, Maldives
    68. Garuae Pass, Fakarava Island, French Polynesia
    69. Blockship Tabarka, Scapa Flow, Orkney
    70. Hanging Garden, Sipadan
    71. Wakaya Passage,Fiji
    72. Santa Rosa Wall, Cozumel, Mexico
    73. Toucari Caves, Dominica
    74. Joel's, PNG
    75. Tiputa Pass, Rangiroa, Polynesia
    76. Diamond Rocks, Kilkee, Ireland
    77. Fujikawa Maru, Truk Lagoon (Chuuk Lagoon)
    78. Sugar Wreck, Grand Bahama Island
    The Umbria 79. Umbria, Sudan
    80. Office, Mozambique
    81. South Point, Sipadan
    82. Chios island, Greece
    83. Palancanar Bricks, Cozumel, Mexico
    84. Bay of Pigs, Cuba
    85. Tiputa pass, Rangiroa, New Zealand
    86. Fish Factory, Vuna Reef, Taveuni, Fiji
    87. Shark Fin Point, Fiji
    88. Great Basses reef, Sri Lanka
    89. East Timor
    90. Cenotes, Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
    91. Marbini Padre, Malaysia
    92. Eddystone Reef
    93. Malpelo Island, Colombia
    94. Shark Point, Solomon Islands
    95. Molokini Crater Wall, Hawaii
    96. Flying Fish Cove, Christmas Island
    97. Split rock, Kadavu Isle. Fiji
    98. Raja Empat, Papua, Indonesia
    99. Amed Wall II, Indonesia
    100. Seal rocks, NSW, Australia

    SCUBA News (ISSN 1476-8011): Issue 100

    Beyond Blue - Marine research, conservation and expeditions

    Beyond Blue is a unique fusion between marine scientists and environmental journalists in which daily discoveries being made about our marine world are brought to life in an exciting and dynamic format.

    We are currently developing a fresh web site which will not only combine the information available at Beyond Blue with our growing community base, but also integrate seamlessly with our constantly evolving online network, which includes organisations such as SAMPLA, and the upcoming Carcharias.

    Click here to Download issue 1

    Beyond Blue - Marine research, conservation and expeditions

    Saturday, 1 November 2008

    ScubaBoard Who's been to Fiji? Advice needed

    First impression, I was stunned with the wealth of hard coral, like no El Nino and no global warmth had ever impacted the area. especially on the outer side of the Great Astrolabe, spots like "Fish Market" are a maze of large acroporas, table, elkhorn, lettuce, fire, brain, any-hard-coral-you-name-it corals.

    My special attention goes to Purple Wall a drifting wall dive on the sides of Naiqoro passage, covered with mainly purple soft coral, but also all sorts of tones ranging from white to bright orangy or deep red soft corals.

    On every dive we had either whitetip or grey reef sharks sights, on one dive, a spotted eagle ray passing into the blue.

    ScubaBoard - View Single Post - Who's been to Fiji? Advice needed