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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A full week!! EFR scenarios, crocodiles bull sharks, dolphins and lionfish disection!!!

So this has been a bit of a mixed week, due to a LOT of rain, lightning and thunder we have missed a few days of diving. However, this meant that we could all sit down together and do our Emergency First Responder course. We have all successfully managed to wrap fake injuries and mummify each other in bandages and can put an unconscious person into the recovery position. Thanks to our new staff member Willem’s acting skills, we responded to a freak emergency that happened to affect every single staff member, from lightning strikes, drowning to severed limbs and falling coconuts! Fortunately everyone survived and Rhu’s limb miraculously grew back.

It has been a really good week for incidental sightings, whilst doing bird watch in the morning, Marty, Sam and Esther saw a massive crocodile at the mangrove mouth. Thea spotted a white-nosed Coati crashing around in the trees outside the huts, divers saw a spotted eagle ray and some very lucky divers managed to go snorkeling with dolphins! (everyone on base was incredibly jealous as we listened to the excited chatter over the radio) Our other spot for the week was a bull shark – this was noticed minutes after boat push – had we seen it first we may have been more reluctant to enter the water….

Staff member Ben demonstrated a lionfish autopsy. Lionfish are an alien and highly aggressive species in the area so whenever we are out on dives we record any sightings and if possible catch them. The lionfish can produce over 30,000 eggs every few days and eat almost anything in their path. This particular lionfish had eaten two small crabs!?!

We have plenty good news with congratulations to our new Open Water divers; Jess, Jenny, Mike and Teague! The rest of us have started our Advanced or Rescue diver courses, so fingers crossed next week we will be able to say congratulations to the rest of the team.