Article: Buzzfeed on what to do with a giant squid

I can’t remember how this story crossed my path – I usually only visit Buzzfeed when someone sends me a link containing cat pictures – but it’s definitely worth your time. I thought I’d share it now, before we (hopefully eventually) move on from the cephalopod obsession that I have been nurturing for a while. … Continue reading Article: Buzzfeed on what to do with a giant squid

Posted on: 23 October 2017 | 1:04 am

Newsletter: Weathered

Hi divers Weekend dive plans Saturday: Student and Refresher dives at Long Beach from 9.00 am I am having a tough time trying to understand the current weather. Despite days of westerly and north westerly wind the visibility has been very very slow to respond. At Long Beach the visibility today was only 3 metres. It … Continue reading Newsletter: Weathered

Posted on: 20 October 2017 | 1:18 am

Bookshelf: Other Minds

Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness – Peter Godfrey-Smith THIS is the octopus book you have been waiting for all your life. Philosopher of science (and, importantly, scuba diver) Peter Godfrey-Smith traces the origins of intelligence through the tree of life, pausing at length on the cephalopods. These animals … Continue reading Bookshelf: Other Minds

Posted on: 18 October 2017 | 2:07 am

Article: Quartz on octopus cities

I’ve just finished reading another book about octopus (yet to be shared here), and the author talks at length about an octopus “city” off the coast of Australia, discovered in 2009 and dubbed Octopolis. Another, similar location, named Octlantis, has since been found, and scientists have recently published their research on these unusual places. Octopus … Continue reading Article: Quartz on octopus cities

Posted on: 16 October 2017 | 1:35 am

Newsletter: Colouring in

Hi divers Weekend dive plans No diving Those dreaded purple crayons have been used on the weather forecast for the weekend, which mean 50+ kilometre per hour winds. Diving is sadly out of the question. Fortunately the direction is good for both improved visibility and some sorely needed rain. If the forecast holds we should … Continue reading Newsletter: Colouring in

Posted on: 13 October 2017 | 1:44 am

Shrimp news from False Bay

The University of Cape Town has announced that a further three new species of shrimp, all spotted close to shore near Millers Point in False Bay, have been described and named. All three belong to the same genus (Heteromysis), and look similar, with pale bodies marked by red spots and stripes. One of these new … Continue reading Shrimp news from False Bay

Posted on: 11 October 2017 | 2:05 am

Cape Town’s visible shipwrecks: Update on the Commodore II

Until recently, the last time I specifically went looking for the wreck of the Commodore II was in December last year, when I went to Milnerton lagoon beach to show visiting family the beautiful view of Table Mountain. At that time tides and waves had moved the wreck further away from the lagoon mouth, and she … Continue reading Cape Town’s visible shipwrecks: Update on the Commodore II

Posted on: 9 October 2017 | 2:05 am

Newsletter: Keeping current

Hi divers Weekend dive plans No diving We dived Long Beach today in surge, strong current and lousy visibility. It is full moon and we have had some swell but I was hoping it would be ok – it wasn’t. Weekend conditions do not look ideal for recreational (fun!) diving. Better luck next week I … Continue reading Newsletter: Keeping current

Posted on: 6 October 2017 | 1:18 am

Article: Exploring False Bay’s kelp forests

Environmental journalist Pippa Ehrlich writes beautifully for Safarious of diving in the kelp forests of False Bay with Sea-Change founder Craig Foster. You might be familiar with Sea-Change from an exhibition at the Sea Point promenade a couple of years ago. The idea of getting into this freezing world every day without a wetsuit was daunting. We … Continue reading Article: Exploring False Bay’s kelp forests

Posted on: 4 October 2017 | 1:12 am

Diving in the I&J Ocean Exhibit at the Two Oceans Aquarium

The I&J Ocean Exhibit is the largest tank at the Two Oceans Aquarium, and has been open since mid-2016. It features a full 10 metre long tunnel, and is home to Yoshi the turtle, two green turtles, bonito, musselcracker, a guitarfish, some rays, and several other species. Watching the animals being fed at 12pm on … Continue reading Diving in the I&J Ocean Exhibit at the Two Oceans Aquarium

Posted on: 2 October 2017 | 1:33 am

Newsletter: Fishy conditions

Hi divers Weekend dive plans No diving We have just returned from Sodwana, where we did a few eventful warm water dives with Coral Divers. If you haven’t been to Sodwana you should add it to your diving bucket list, for the colourful, vibrant reefs and good visibility. Highly recommended. Local diving is not looking … Continue reading Newsletter: Fishy conditions

Posted on: 29 September 2017 | 2:03 am

Bookshelf: Into a Raging Sea

Into a Raging Sea: Great South African Rescues – Tony Weaver & Andrew Ingram I insensitively packed this book for Tony to read while we were aboard MSC Sinfonia for the BirdLife cruise we took in April. It’s a rip-roaring read about various rescues that the NSRI has been involved with over the years, but – … Continue reading Bookshelf: Into a Raging Sea

Posted on: 27 September 2017 | 1:28 am

Bookshelf: Guide to Seabirds of Southern Africa

Guide to Seabirds of Southern Africa – Peter Ryan An indispensable companion on Flock at Sea AGAIN! was this book by Peter Ryan, director of the FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology at the University of Cape Town. It’s a slim volume that made seabird identification much easier for us (novices) by virtue of its focus. … Continue reading Bookshelf: Guide to Seabirds of Southern Africa

Posted on: 25 September 2017 | 1:28 am

Newsletter: On and off

Hi divers Weekend dive plans DIY diving! False Bay has been on and off this week. The swell is not wicked but it’s there and noticeable. The weekend does not look terrible, but we will leave the choice of diving or not up to you… We are heading north in search of warmer water. We … Continue reading Newsletter: On and off

Posted on: 22 September 2017 | 1:45 am

BirdLife South Africa Flock at Sea AGAIN! 2017 – part ii (the birds)

We were surprised by the intensity of the birding that took place on Flock At Sea AGAIN! 2017. In retrospect we shouldn’t have been, but being around 2,000 serious twitchers was, at turns, overwhelming and hilarious. Tony and I spent quite a lot of time on deck 4 of MSC Sinfonia, bothering our friend Ian. … Continue reading BirdLife South Africa Flock at Sea AGAIN! 2017 – part ii (the birds)

Posted on: 20 September 2017 | 1:25 am

BirdLife South Africa Flock at Sea AGAIN! 2017 – part i (the boat)

A disclaimer up front: Tony and I are not bird people (we are more “anything that moves” people). While we are friends with several serious twitchers, we tend to get distracted by landscapes and the large beige beasts that birds sometimes sit on. Our decision to book a spot for ourselves on the BirdLife South … Continue reading BirdLife South Africa Flock at Sea AGAIN! 2017 – part i (the boat)

Posted on: 18 September 2017 | 1:26 am

Newsletter: In the zone

Hi divers Weekend dive plans Sunday: Boat dives or Long Beach dives, depending on conditions We seem to have fallen into a weekday diving zone where conditions are good for a few days during the week and then the weekend comes and the wheels fall off. There is a lot of swell and wind in the … Continue reading Newsletter: In the zone

Posted on: 15 September 2017 | 1:15 am

Article: Outside on shark repellents

A recurring but seemingly never-resolved question that intrigues shark researchers and management entities is that of whether there exists a reliable, non-lethal shark repellent. Such a shark repellent would solve all manner of management problems: organisations like Shark Spotters exist partly to navigate that tense, thin line between sharks killing people and people killing sharks. … Continue reading Article: Outside on shark repellents

Posted on: 13 September 2017 | 1:42 am

Article: The Atlantic on booming cephalopod populations

Let’s not quit our contemplation of the remarkable octopus just yet. For The Atlantic, the wonderful Ed Yong reports on a long-term (since the 1960s) trend of increasing cephalopod populations in the world’s oceans. Cephalopods are octopus, squid, and cuttlefish. The first paragraph of Yong’s article describes cuttlefish in Australian waters that are “the size and … Continue reading Article: The Atlantic on booming cephalopod populations

Posted on: 11 September 2017 | 1:04 am

Newsletter: Spring into action

Hi divers Weekend dive plans Sunday: Double tank dive in the ocean, location to be confirmed What to say about the weekend? Saturday looks way too windy for my liking. Sunday is almost windless, however some swell and the howling south easterly wind all of the previous night might not leave False Bay very pleasant. It is not inconceivable … Continue reading Newsletter: Spring into action

Posted on: 8 September 2017 | 1:52 am