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Friday, June 4, 2010

Week 8 in Pez Maya- cenote diving, lionfish catch and a succesful rescue scenario

Finally the weather is cooperating again here in Pez Maya, and with the return of calm seas and shining sun we have had a number of “dives of a lifetime.” This has included one dive where the group saw a loggerhead turtle, a 6-foot long nurse shark, a ray and a moray eel. A second group was very fortunate as another manatee paid them a visit. All of us are anticipating our next dive in hope of having another incidental sighting. Along with these welcome visitors are some unwelcome visitors… lionfish. The staff have been doing their bit in keeping the population of this invasive species down.

This past weekend, a number of us had another amazing dive as we headed to the cenote Dos Ojos for two spectacular cavern dives. We swam by amazing rock formations as we weaved in and around stalagmites, stalactites and rock pillars. On our second dive we surfaced into the batcave. Although Batman was nowhere to be seen, we did receive a very informative lesson about centotes in the Yucatan as we gazed in amazement at the stalactites and bats hanging above our heads.

Our rescue diver course came to an exciting finale this week as our breakfast was interrupted with our final scenario – two missing divers had not returned from their early morning search for a lost weight belt. The rescue divers quickly organized themselves and two snorkel teams entered the water to start their search patterns as two others kitted up in their dive gear.

Thankfully our efforts were rewarded as we found the two divers and towed them to shore. Unfortunately one of the divers was unresponsive, but after some hard work and a strong team effort, we were able to administer rescue breaths and CPR while providing her with oxygen in order to save her. With the conclusion of the rescue diver course, the aspiring dive masters have been working hard on their knowledge reviews and completing their stamina tests and dive skills.