Scuba diving amongst Hawksbill turtles in Roatan.

All photos courtesy of www.alexandrahbphotography.com

The hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata) is a critically endangered sea turtle belonging to the family Cheloniidae. It is the only extant species in the genus Eretmochelys. The species has a worldwide distribution, with Atlantic and Indo-Pacific subspecies.

The hawksbill's appearance is similar to that of other marine turtles. In general, it has a flattened body shape, a protective carapace, and flipper-like limbs, adapted for swimming in the open ocean. E. imbricata is easily distinguished from other sea turtles by its sharp, curving beak with prominent tomium, and the saw-like appearance of its shell margins. Hawksbill shells slightly change colors, depending on water temperature.

While this turtle lives part of its life in the open ocean, it spends more time in shallow lagoons and coral reefs. The World Conservation Union, primarily as a result of Human fishing practices, classifies E. imbricata as critically endangered.[1] Hawksbill shells were the primary source of tortoiseshell material used for decorative purposes. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species outlaws the capture and trade of hawksbill sea turtles and products derived from them.

Macro photography diving - top tip to find the small stuff

Today, was a clear, sunny and typically warm day in Roatan. The diving was also clear, warm water and little current, a perfect day of searching for the little critters underwater. Go slow and you'll always find more.

Macro tip of the week, look for Sailfin Blennies in sandy areas. Their little black or white heads will generally be seen in an isolated coral head on the sand. If you're lucky and patient you might even see them fully come out of the hole and display their amazing dorsal fin.

Sailfin Blenny, Deep Turtle Crossing Dive Site

Photo courtesy of Alexandra Harper-Graham www.alexandrahbphotography.com

 

Superbowl Sunday + BBQ at the diveshop

Your big winners of the night!!!  Alex and Monty won three times on the squares, about 160USD... whoohoooo

Your big winners of the night!!!  Alex and Monty won three times on the squares, about 160USD... whoohoooo

Super Bowl LI will be the 51st Super Bowl and the 47th modern-era National Football League (NFL) championship game. The American Football Conference (AFC) champion New England Patriots will play the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Atlanta Falcons to decide the league champion for the 2016 season. 

As it stands all bets are in for the game, good luck everyone!!

Burgers and Dogs

Burgers and Dogs

BBQ Chicken Wings

BBQ Chicken Wings

Saskatchewan Roughriders would love to take on the Patriots or Falcons!!!!  Greatest football team in the world!!

Saskatchewan Roughriders would love to take on the Patriots or Falcons!!!!  Greatest football team in the world!!

Tonight on the menu will be burgers, weiners, kabobs, chicken wings and much more... Its a potluck dinner so bring what you want to throw on the BBQ, or bring a side dish.

Watching it on the HD Projector, so a 10ft screen for tonight.

Watching it on the HD Projector, so a 10ft screen for tonight.

End of the week Sunset Cruise with family and friends.

And so ends another week of diving at the shop.  The weather started with a short two day storm which we fled to Flowers Bay for some south side diving. By Wednesday we were back diving in west end enjoying dive sites like Texas, Hole in the Wall, Peters Place, and Bears Den.  To end every week we have Funday Friday, a customer appreciation day with sunset drinks, fishing, music, dancing, and shenanigans with all the dive staff. 

Looks like were off to the south side on sunday..... booooooooo.... However we are keeping the big boat over in Las Palmas for the week, which means we are diving Marys Place, 40 ft point, Mr bud wreck, Prince Albert wreck, Valley of the Kings, and many more... 

Potlicker will then stay in Flowers Bay for the open water courses and DSD,s for the week.  Be sure to come down and check out at the wave action at our friend Daryls resort, Lands End..  Amazing views and cheap beer!!

Outta here, see ya!!

Outta here, see ya!!

License to kill!!!!!

Chantal and Rachel slaying lunch

Chantal and Rachel slaying lunch

 

Ever since we arrived on the island, Chantal and I knew we wanted our Lionfish licenses. Although they are pretty, in the Caribbean, Lionfish are an invasive species. There are a number of theories on how they arrived from the Indopacific, but no matter who or what is to blame, Lionfish are a problem in Roatan. They have no natural predators, voracious appetites, and a strong resilience to environmental factors allowing them to easily spread through the Caribbean and beyond. Our licenses were obtained through the Roatan Marine Park, the NGO responsible for protecting over 941 hectares of coastline and sea surrounding our island. Although the license was 50 dollars (a little pricey for a DMT) We knew our money was largely a donation to the Marine Park, and when you have a passion for diving, supporting local conservation efforts is a no brainer.

Plus, they gave us spears!

After we watched the video https://youtu.be/yRjs78-5F-Yand had a short talk with Nic, the Marine Infrastructure Coordinator, we headed out to the sand patch to prove our worth! The harvest of lionfish is important for the health of the reef, however the irresponsible use of spears could potentially be worse. Bad buoyancy and missed shots risk hits to the coral, damaging thousands of years of growth.  So before we were able to head out and hunt we had to prove to Nic that we were capable. He provided us with a number of coconuts so we could get a feel for the action of our spears. After we were comfortable he set up a ‘pretend’ reef and placed the coconuts in small alcoves (where lionfish typically hang out), and we KILLED those coconuts!

 I think even Nic was surprised.

With our licenses to kill, Chantal and I can’t wait to join the fight for the control of lionfish in Roatan. The free ceviche doesn’t hurt either!

An H.P. hose vs L.P. hose, in a cut hose situation which will leak the fastest?

Are you sure you know?

As an experienced diver or not, it is important to know your personal dive equipment and rental equipment.  Today's question is from Monty and he asks the public which tank will empty faster?  The air tank on the right has 3000psi a Cressi Sub first stage and a high pressure hose attached but has been cut in half.  The nitrox tank on the left is 3000psi Dive rite first stage and a low pressure hose attached and is also cut in half.

Low pressure hose on the left, High pressure hose on the right.

Imagine diving along enjoying the wonders of the underwater world and BOOM and a Channel Clinging Crab climbs aboard your first stage and cuts one of your L.P hoses.  How long do you have?

 

Same situation by the deadly human hating crab, but this time he goes for your only H.P line, how long do you think it is before all the air is out considering the tank is full?

 

 

Please feel free to leave a comment, I will show a video later in the week on the correct answer.

2 80cf tanks filled to 3000psi

Friday funday sunset cruise

Every friday join us for an adventure of fun filled activities.  This week we was a sunset cruise with staff and guests of the dive center.  As well there was a bit of boozing, music, and fishing.....  Denver reeled in a 5 lb blue fin tuna that fed a couple happy customers...... 

Make sure to follow our blog for updates and exciting adventures with the coconut tree dive staff...