Weekly Dive Report – August 4th – 10th

Yes, it’s been a week already since our last Koh Tao Dive Site report! Time flies when you are having underwater fun!

Our resident photo guru Rob has been practicing a few new techniques lately and has produced some amazing images playing around with colour saturation. These is one of our favouites, taken on the MS Sattakut wreck. The colours really pop out, and as one of our divers commented, you sometimes have to look twice to even appreciate they are taken underwater!

htms-sattakut-koh-tao

This week has been a bit dreary weather wise, and unfortunately we’ve experienced more than our fair share of rain and wind. It hasn’t been wet all of the time, but when it rains here, man does it rain! The rest of the week was overcast, with some sunny spells. Despite the not so sunny conditions, the visibility underwater has remained extremely good at a range of sites though, so none the less we have still enjoyed some great dives and as usual some brilliant marine life sightings.

A dull day in Mae Haad but still great conditions underwater

 

Aside form the Sattakut, we also visited Junkyard Reef, Twins, Japanese Gardens and Laem Thien. All of these are perfect shallow sites for PADI Open Water Diver training dives, and most have expansive sand patches, which are perfect for practicing skills.

dive-courses-koh-tao

In a break from the photo norm, Rob has spent some time this week putting together a video for you, to highlight the best of what we’ve witnessed. The wreck is looking as impressive as ever, with a thermocline at around 20m giving it an exciting and eerie feel. We hope you will enjoy all of the smaller critters we’ve spotted too. Macro photography, let alone macro videography, is a tough skill to master. So we hope you will appreciate Rob’s effots in getting some amazing close up shots of goby fish, shrimps and even a flatworm. A beautiful compilation!

We hope you enjoy the video, and see you again next week for our next report. We can guarantee more excellent images, and hopefully some clearer skies and sunshine too! Until next time, Master Divers over and out!

Preparing for a Life Changing Experience – by Master Divers Life Winner Katie Woodroffe

Is it the 28th of August yet? That is the day I fly out of Birmingham and begin my journey to Koh Tao. I can’t hide the fact that I have been watching an endless amount of travel vlogs on the island- I could probably write an entire book on the paradise-like setting.

Really though, how does one prepare for something that promises to be a life changing experience? If I’m honest, I feel as though I have been preparing for this for a while. Since I left my last job and moved back to England from Thailand at the end of last year, I have made several changes in my life so that I could gear myself towards achieving a career in the Scuba diving industry. But none of this felt wrong or out of place, it all felt well timed and almost synchronistic with elements of serendipity intertwined into events. Maybe preparing for a life changing experience is easier when you’ve already envisioned it.
Either way, since this vision has become real, there have been a few preparations I have had to make to ensure my journey to my new home is as smooth as can be.

I Quit My Job…
Upon returning to England last year I began working part time at a pub that I worked at when I was 19. It was certainly strange going back and I bumped into lots of familiar people. Since finding out that I was the winner of Master Divers Life, I have handed my notice in and have already been saying my goodbyes to the people that I serve across the bar. I think I seem a little eager to leave, but I don’t mind.

..And got Myself a Visa
This went surprisingly well. I had gotten a visa for Thailand before, and remember it taking a while to sort out. But this time all it took was a few emails and a phone call and I was able to pick up my visa the following day from the Thai Consulate in Cardiff. Luckily, my boyfriend and I had planned this around a three-day trip to Pembrokeshire in South Wales, and we were in and out of the office in minutes.

I Started Packing (yes.. already)
It may be 4 weeks until I fly, but I have always been the kind of person to begin making a pile of things earlier than necessary! I always aim to travel light, yet always seem to take clothes with me that I never use (like the 50 bikinis I have already bought). In all seriousness, I will only be taking a bag or two with me, a carry on back pack and a larger bag for the hold luggage.

Finally, I Carried on Diving!
The weather here in England is ridiculously warm. It apparently is the hottest summer we have had in 100 years – don’t quote me on that though. But it has presented the perfect opportunity to make the most of open water diving here in the UK. I even dived without a hood and gloves last week, something that I had not yet done in the UK! I live right in the centre of England, so diving in the sea is not something we do often. However, we have a lovely quarry close by that I visit on a regular basis along with other divers from the centre that I did my Dry Suit Speciality and PADI Rescue Diver courses with. My Dry Suit Speciality was completed at a quarry called Capernwray back in February and the water temperature was a chilly 5 degrees Celsius – that is one memory of UK diving that I will not forget in a hurry!

It’s been a great six months with them, and I will really miss them when I leave. But I cannot wait to get back diving in the ocean again- diving quarries in dry suits really has been an amazing experience and I have enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would, but there is nothing like the wonders and beauty of the deep blue (and the warmth of the tropics!). Until then, here is a photo of me on my last dive, on PADI Womens Dive Day, feeling all free and happy without the restriction of a hood and gloves!!

So that’s it really, I’ll be getting my head down at work for the next few weeks and when I begin my journey over to Thailand, I will be sure to capture some footage and throw a little vlog together once I have arrived and settled in, so keep an eye out for updates!

Weekly Dive Report – July 28th – August 3rd

It’s that time of the week again where we showcase our dive conditions over the previous seven days. We’ve had some fantastic dives, and our amazing photographer Rob, has been trying some new tricks and techniques with his photos – and we think you’ll agree with resounding success. This weeks images are truly fabulous, and it’s been especially hard for us to narrow them down to our favourites for you!

giant-stride-entry-koh-tao

Aside form one day of fairly heavy rain on Wednesday, we have enjoyed bright sunny skies, and great visibility underwater. This week we journeyed to a range of dive sites spanning all coats of the island. From Hin Ngam and Tanote Bay on the East coast, to the HTMS Sattakut wreck and  White Rock on the West Coast, we have really enjoyed the conditions and the company we’ve had on board this week.

We’ve seen so much great marine life both large as small, from coral crabs to turtles (who doesn’t love a dive with a turtle).

turtle-at-white-rock-koh-tao

This little beauty that stumped both Rob and myself on our fish identification. Any ideas folks?!

unidentified-fish-koh-tao

 

With wonderful visibility, our lucky divers really got to see the best of the HTMS Sattakut wreck, which at other times of the year has been murky or covered in a thick thermocline.

htms-sattakut-wreck-dive-koh-tao htms-sattakut-koh-tao

 

Our favourite shot this week was this moray eel with its mouth wide open waiting to be cleaned by a shrimp, which you can just make out at the base of the image.

moray-eel-moth-wide-open-koh-tao

Enjoy this week’s video and see you all for more underwater photo viewing next week!

Weekly Dive Report – July 21st-27th July

Welcome to our latest report for diving conditions on Koh Tao in the last week! After some changeable conditions the previous week, the blue skies and bright sunshine returned – as did our need for sunscreen! We’ve been treated to some excellent sightings this week, and as usual visited a variety of sites, with our aim being for our divers to see as much as possible during their stay with us.

 

Chumphon-fun-diving-koh-tao Cesa-practice-PAD-Open-Water-Diver

The shallower sites we went to included Mango Bay and Japanese Gardens.  These are both sheltered and sandy, perfect for some nice easy dives, and with plenty of marine life of all shapes and sizes.  We also visited White Rock, which is a firm favourite for Fun Diving thanks to the array of tropical fish and large areas of healthy coral reef to explore.

white-rock-corals-and-nudi trought-white-rock-koh-tao

 

We also took a trip out to Chumphon Pinnacle, which never fails to disappoint due to the array of schooling fish, and the firlds of anemones and anemone fish that adorn the top of the pinnacles.

Chumphon-anemone-fish Chumphon-reef-scene-Koh-Tao

Our favourite spot this week though….this fabulous Jenkins ray and its blue spotted friend at Twins.

jenkins-ray-at-twins

Enjoy this week’s video and see you all for more underwater photo viewing next week!

Weekly Dive Report – July 14th – July 20th

Welcome to the latest round up of another fabulous week on Koh Tao! The weather has been slightly changeable, with some wind and cloud cover at the beginning of the week, but clearing up as time progressed. By the end of the week we had returned to our usual sunny skies and calmer water conditions.

Regardless of the weather though, the diving conditions have been great, and we’ve seen a wide array of marine life and corals.

whip-corals-koh-tao wrasse-fish-lighthouse-koh-tao

 

This week, we visited Mango Bay, a lovely site with a clear sandy bottom and plenty of tropical fish. Perfect for Fun Dives and PADI Open Water Diver courses alike.

mango-bay-diving

 

We also visited Hin Ngam and Lighthouse Bay, which are both on the east coast of the island, so perfect for when there is wind that causes waves here on the east coast.

beaked-coral-fish-koh-tao batfish-hin-ngam

 

In addition, we visited a favourite fixture on our dive schedule, the HTMS Sattakut, for some Wreck Adventure Dives as part of the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course. We love this black and white shot with just the fin colour highlighted.

htms-sattakut-koh-tao

 

We hope you enjoy this week’s video, and wish you all the best for another excellent week ahead.

See you all for more underwater photo viewing next week!

Weekly Dive Report – July 7th – July 13th

This weeks’ installment from Rob Kelly from Ocean Secrets, with a guest shot of Rob himself by Gunther Ahamer. Enjoy!

This week, we visited Japanese Gardens, a great spot for some macro photography during a PADI Digital Underwater Photography course. We had sunshine, calm conditions and around 8-12m visibility.

Bar Tail Goat Fish Bearded Scorpion Fish Underwater Photographer

We also visited Laem Thien as this is our site for Project AWARE Adopt a Dive Site, the divers enjoyed a Dive Against Debris dive. It was calm, with no current, the sun was shinning and the vis was around 12-15m.

Christmas Tree Worms Salp

We went to Lighthouse Pinnacle, where we had a considerable swell with some current. It was overcast and visibility was 10-15m.

Harp Coral Harp Coral One Spot Snapper

We had a slight surface swell and mild surface current at Nang Yuan Pinnacle (also known as Red Rock) this week. Everyone enjoyed the swim-through! Sunshine and clouds with 10-15m visibility.

Bronze Snapper Rob Kelly Bat FIsh

We taught a PADI Rescue course at Aow Leuk, where it was clam with no current this week and we were happy to see the sun shining! Visibility was around 10-15m.

Master Divers boat Juvenile Orange Spot Grouper PADI Rescue Diver course Juvenile Grouper Bushy Table Coral

Until next week… happy bubble blowing!

8 Easy Steps to Ensure Scuba Diving Safety

As most seasoned divers will tell you, Scuba diving is indeed an incredibly safe sport when it’s done properly. Well trained divers who use good judgement and follow the correct procedures have no need to be concerned. In fact, according to most research, diving is really no more dangerous than swimming. Certainly compared to many other adventure sports – and even many every day mundane activities that we do without hesitation! –  diving is very safe.

There are of course lots of things you can do to ensure you are well prepared and limit the possibility of running into any dangers or potential problems….

 

Dive regularly
Sounds like a no brainer, and it pretty much is! Those who dive more often will generally have better developed skills sets, more efficient communication and a more up to date base of knowledge – whether through having taken more courses, or simply through regular exposure to other divers with whom they share stories and information. The safest divers are those for whom basic skills have become second nature. For example a regular diver does not need to think too much about buoyancy control. They just naturally adapt their breathing to make small changes. Same goes for basic skills like mask clearing. If you were to ask a Divemaster how many times they cleared their mask during a particular dive for example, chances are they wouldn’t have a clue! They just do it by second nature.

diving-koh-tao-mangobay

Most divers readily admit that they would like nothing more than to dive more often. However for most people, and especially those living in colder climates, real world work and family responsibilities do tend to get in the way and it is not always possible to dive whenever you want to. Diving clubs do exist in most locations though, so it is always worth checking out a few options in your area. If cold water isn’t your thing, you may find that you’re happy just to jump in the pool every now and again and have a play around with your equipment, trim and basic skills. Even if you don’t physically get in the water at all, many local clubs have meet up evenings where you can share experiences and tips for future dive travel etc.

If you do end up dry for too long though, then it is always recommended to take a proper Scuba Review. Most major dive agencies recommend this after a period of 6 months, but there is no hard and fast rule. You’ll find each dive centre will have its different policies as to when they require divers to make a full scuba review, which will invariably take into account your number and frequency of logged dives, as well as the location of the dive centre itself and the dive conditions that are to be expected during your stay. For example if you are going diving in strong currents or reduced visibility, then a full refresh is definitely the way forward! A thorough refresher consists of some theory, a recap of equipment fitting and set up, as well as some skills practice. The vast majority of divers find it very rewarding, and in many holiday locations you’d be completing it in the sea, so chances are you’d get to see some fish and corals too! It really is a worthwhile experience though, as quite often divers are amazed at the wealth of information they have forgotten!

BCD Removal

Alternatives to refreshers include private guiding on a shallow reef for your first couple of dives of your trip, or perhaps a ‘check dive’ on the house reef – if shore diving is a viable option for the location. Our advice is not to skimp on refreshing your skills though. For a few extra bucks, you’ll have a much better experience overall if you spend a little extra time getting the basics sorted before heading out on deeper or more challenge dives.

 

Dive with a Reputable Operator
Again, sounds like a no brainer yes? But you’d be surprised! There are a whole host of dive centres out there and you’d be shocked how much ethics and morality varies between them. Some will promise top notch quality, service and professionalism and proceed to deliver it, whereas others appear as if they are just out to take your hard earned savings, with seemingly little care for your comfort or safety once you are through their door.

As with all areas of diving, the key is to use good judgement. This is especially true if you are choosing a dive centre not just for yourself, but for friends or family members who are travelling with you. It’s not worth saving a nominal amount to get the best deal if you’ll be using inferior dive gear or ill-equipped dive vessels, diving with inexperienced staff, or not learning in accordance with training agency standards. In this day and age, you’d expect adherence to agency and industry standards to be a given, but unfortunately quite often it’s just not the case.

learn-to-dive-koh-tao-sign

Try not to be too focussed on price and find a balance of value based on your expectations. After all, if the price seems too good to be true, then it probably is! It’s absolutely worth paying a little extra to know the operation you choose won’t be cutting corners at your expense. The best way to explain it is by equating learning to dive to learning other adventure activities. If you were looking to go sky diving or become a hang glider or try white water rafter for example, you wouldn’t really shop around for the cheapest possible option. You’d choose the centre with the best safety, equipment, standards and reputation. Diving should be no different.

 

Adopt Good Buddy Team Procedures
Some divers have their own regular buddies, but many others rely on their dive operator to pair them up with a suitable buddy, who hopefully will have a similar skill and experience level to you. Depending on where they’ve trained however, this may not be the case. We’ve all seen instances where an Advanced level diver with all of their own equipment shows up and proceeds to spoil the trip with their bad practices, know-it-all attitude and sub-par skill set. So if you are getting paired up with an ‘Insta-Buddy’, spend a little time chatting with them prior to the dive and gauge for what they’ll be like to dive with.

Don’t skip the buddy check! No matter how familiar you are with your gear and your buddies gear, or how excited you are to get off the boat and into the water. Safety protocols in scuba – and indeed every other industry too – have been developed and are in place for a reason. That reason generally being that if they are not followed, things can go wrong.

buddy-check-bwraf

Before the dive, make sure you are comfortable with the hand signals and communication techniques you’ll be using before the dive. Once you are underwater it is too late to ask questions! During the dive, maintain regular communication to ensure comfort and safety.

Stay close to your buddy, and maintain an awareness at all times as to where they are in relation to you. If you were to need their help in an out of air emergency for example, you need to be close enough to reach them. If you are checking your gauges frequently of course this shouldn’t need to happen. But still, they need to be within reach for your safety – and visa versa. If you are on a training course, remain close to your instructor and follow their directions when requested. Their role is to train you in good practices, as well as ensure your safety throughout your dives, so they generally don’t appreciate you drifting too far from them.

 

Maintain Good Health and Fitness for Diving
The healthier you are in general, the lower your risk of suffering from a dive related illness. If you are unfit, overweight, badly rested, dehydrated or have any residual alcohol or drugs in your system for example, then you are already more likely to suffer from Decompression Sickness (DCS) than if none of these factors apply. So to make the most of your dives, maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle. When diving on vacation, make sure you drink adequate water (especially in hotter climates where becoming dehydrated is more likely) and are well rested before morning dives. It’s also a good idea to lay off the alcohol the night before. It’s a small price to pay for enjoying some amazing dives.

Don’t dive if you are not feeling well, or if you have a cold or are congested. This can be frustrating if you are on holiday and only have a set number of diving days, but it’s just not worth the risk. A blockage one day can turn into a full blown ear or sinus infection the next day if you push it – and any diver who’s ever suffered from reverse block will tell you it’s not an experience they’d ever want to repeat. Many illnesses have signs and symptoms which mimic those of DCS, so if you have been ill and feel better but are still not completely recovered, wait until all signs and symptoms have disappeared. An example of this would be Dengue fever which is a viral infection spread by mosquitos, and is common around Asia. When the fever breaks and normal health returns, a skin rash is common – just as it is with DCS. So if you were to suffer from a suspected case of DCS, physicians would not know whether your symptoms were fever related or dive related, making diagnosis and resulting treatment much more difficult.

Diving on Koh Tao

If you sign up to take any kind of dive course, you’ll be required to fill in a medical form. Certain medical conditions may prevent you from diving, such as active asthma and heart conditions for example. Whereas other conditions will require you to have a sign off from a Dive Medical Officer (DMO) or General Practitioner (GP) prior to getting started. If you take a diving holiday to a more remote diving areas, full medical services and consultations may not be available, so it’s worth doing the leg work prior to setting off on any conditions that need a physician’s sign off. In some areas the dive centre may be required by local regulations in terms of where you get your medical sign off, and who conducts it. This can sometimes eat into both your time and your savings to get organised properly, but it is imperative that you have the relevant consult. Be understanding that your dive operator is not trying to make the process more difficult for you by insisting on a proper medical, they are simply doing their due diligence to ensure the safety of you and other divers in their care. The golden rule is never to lie on the medical form! Not only is it a legally binding document, but if you lie on the form and then have an accident it’s unlikely your insurance will cover you – whether it’s related to the medical issue or not.

 

Dive Within Your Limits
Another seemingly fairly obvious one, but always something to keep at the forefront of your mind when planning dives. Your limits can be defined in many ways, first and foremost in terms of certification level as not only will different depth limits apply, but skill and experience levels would be expected to differ too. Whatever certification level you have, don’t be tempted to dive deeper than your licence allows, and stick to what you are qualified to do. If you don’t have a wreck or cave diving qualification for instance, then you should not be entering into any overhead environments. Bear in mind that if you stray beyond the limits of your current level and something were to go wrong, your insurance would not cover you.

Whale shark with divers

Each individual diver will also have limits in terms of comfort levels when it comes to visibility, water temperature, surge and surf, currents etc. Remember that every diver has the right to call off a dive at any time if they do not feel comfortable. So never allow yourself to be pressured to dive, or feel rushed to get into the water if you are not ready. Even during the dive it is absolutely acceptable to call it off if you feel out of your comfort zone and do not wish to continue. Equally, never put pressure on another diver to dive outside of their comfort zone either, and try to be understanding and supportive if they back out of a dive.

Dive in familiar equipment that you are confident using. Obviously it is not always feasible to take a full set of your own gear away with you on every trip. Plus if you are an infrequent or holiday diver, you may not have invested in larger items like a BCD or Regulator yet. However the main configuration should be the same, so if you are used to diving in a jacket style BCD for example, then switching to a backplate set up without the relevant instruction or advice would probably cause you discomfort in the water.

 

Take Continuing Education Courses
There’s no better way to stay current than investing in a continuing education course. After entry level certification the most popular course is the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course, which allows you to explore different underwater environments – like diving deeper, on ship wrecks or at night. Advanced courses are great for developing your confidence and building on your scuba skills so you can become more comfortable in the water. And despite the name, you don’t have to be “advanced” to enroll. Most of the time you can sign up as soon as you get certified. This is a great way to get more dives under your belt while continuing to learn under the supervision of an instructor.

htms-sattakut-koh-tao

PADI Rescue Diver courses are also popular, and most divers who get Rescue certified say it was their favourite and the most rewarding course they have ever taken. A good Rescue course will make you far more aware of yourself and your dive buddy, maximizing safety and enjoyment, and gives you both the skills to avoid emergency situations before they arise, and the confidence to manage a real emergency situation should it occur.

There is a pretty endless list of Specialty Courses with the most popular being PADI Deep Diver, PADI Enriched Air Nitrox Diver and PADI Wreck Diver. Specialties are  a fantastic way to gain more skills, confidence and experience, and from the extensive menu available, there is always something to suit everyone.

 

Respect the Marine Environment
Abide by your parents favourite words “look but don’t touch”, or for a more Scuba applicable mantra “leave only bubbles, take only pictures”!

It is never OK to touch, pick up, harass or manipulate marine life. It’s as simple as that. Many of our favourite underwater inhabitants such as sharks, rays and turtles can become more susceptible to disease if we touch them. This is because their scales/shells/skins are covered in a thin protective layer of what scientists call biofilm. Once removed, they are at much greater risk of infection.

Turtle whilst snorkeling in Koh Tao

Corals are unfortunately very easy to damage too. Some corals are incredibly slow growing, and one careless fin kick can destroy up to ten years of growth. So it is imperative that you have good trim and buoyancy control, and don’t do any accidental harm.

Not only can you cause harm to marine life by touching or moving things, but the reef can also harm you. From sharp corals and spikey urchins to scorpion fish and stone fish spines, jelly fish stings and everything in between, coming into contact with marine life is just not a good idea. So do be aware of your surroundings, and if you do not feel you are in complete control of your movements, keep your distance.

 

Use Good Quality and Well Maintained Equipment
Another glaringly obvious one at first glance. Make sure you check the equipment you’ll be using thoroughly before it’s packed for the trip, and again during set up. If you are not happy with the quality of any of the rental gear, don’t be afraid to speak up. The better quality the equipment you use, the less chance their is of experiencing a malfunction. The regulator and BCD are generally the most important pieces of equipment your’ll need to check, as these provide your life support and control underwater. Don’t forget to check the tanks for visual and hydrostatic test dates too though.

The best way to retail control when it comes to equipment is to have your own. If you are using your own gear make sure it is up to date for service and maintenance. Each manufacturer’s guide will recommend a time frame, but for example with regulators the widely accepted consensus is to service once a year or every 100 dives, whichever is reached first. If you know that some of the parts for your set up are not common, then make sure you take spares with you. Many more experienced divers carry their own ‘save a dive kit’, with items such as fin straps, mask straps, mouth pieces, o-rings and cable ties for those little wear and tear replacements. If you dive regularly in hot locations, be wary of prolonged sun exposure, which can weaken or damage your equipment over time.

By following all of these recommendations you can minimise your risks and stay safe on any of your local dives or Scuba holidays. As you can see, most of it comes down to common sense and good judgement. Divers who treat both the sport and the ocean with respect, and dive with a healthy minds, bodies and attitudes, will experience no problems, and indeed nothing but pleasure in our amazing underwater world!

Weekly Dive Report – June 30th – July 6th

This weeks’ installment from Rob Kelly from Ocean Secrets. Enjoy!

This week, we visited Japanese Gardens, a great spot for some macro photography during a PADI Digital Underwater Photography course. We had bright sunshine, calm conditions and around 8-12m visibility.

Japanese Gardens Dart Fish Goby Fish Goby Fish Japanese Gardens

We also visited Laem Thien as this is our site for Project AWARE Adopt a Dive Site, the divers enjoyed a Dive Against Debris dive.

Pipe fish Laem Thien Dive Against Debris Laem Thien

We had a great dive at Lighthouse Pinnacle, where we had calm conditions, some sunshine and clouds and a little surface current, the visibility was 20-30m.

Snail Fish in a bottle Xeno Crab

We had a slight surface swell and mild surface current at Nang Yuan Pinnacle (also known as Red Rock) this week. Everyone enjoyed the swim-through! Sunshine and 10-14m visibility.

Swim through Swim Through

Until next week… happy bubble blowing!

Weekly Dive Report – June 23rd – 29th

Here’s this weeks’ installment from Rob Kelly from Ocean Secrets. Enjoy!

This week, we visited Japanese Gardens, a regular for our newer divers and those trying it out for the very first time with a PADI Discover Scuba Diving Experience. We had bright sunshine, calm conditions and around 8-12m visibility.

Angelfish

Black Damsel Fish

Discover Scuba Diving

Mushroom Coral

We also visited , Mango Bay where it was calm and sunny with no current and 8-10m visibility.

Sand Mullet

Red Breasted Wrasse

We had a little surface swell and mild surface current at Chumphon Pinnacle this week. Some sunshine and clouds and 8-12m visibility.

Anemone Lion Fish Chumphon Pinnacle

Until next week… happy bubble blowing!

Dive Against Debris featuring Dive Master Interns

Starting our new professional divers on the right foot

There are many things that are important to the staff at Master Divers; great customer service, high PADI standards and our beloved shop animals. Up the top of the list is moulding excellent professionals at Dive Master and Instructor level, and our commitment to conservation. This month we were able to marry the two.

New DMC Niko cleaning up at Laem Thian

Throughout training our dive masters are encouraged to get involved with beach cleans, dive site clean ups, conservation events and to be ambassadors for good environmental practices. On this occasion we had our dive master interns organise a dive against debris from start to finish. They were responsible for the advertising, organising sign up and paperwork, briefing the Dive Against Debris, collecting the trash, organising other participants and collating the data.

Some serious lift bag action by Conservation Instructor Hayley

Our achievements

Everyone worked hard on the day, despite rain to start and rough seas on the way home, and we are incredibly grateful to everyone involved. A big shout out to our interns that worked so hard for the day to run smoothly. We collected a grand total of 146 kilos of trash!! 41kg from the beach (which Moritz bravely transported back via kayak) and 105kg from the sea. Largely made up from 2 huge tyres found in the coral.

Our team of Instructors, Dive Masters, Dive Master Interns and volunteers

Mother nature was very kind to us and we got a lovely visit from a black tip reef shark that was unusually interested in us. In fact the life we saw on the dive and snorkel was amazing! A baby Titan Triggerfish, possibly the cutest thing in the world (but camera shy), black tip sharks, scribbled filefish, and unicorn fish to name a few!

black tip

A welcome visit from a gorgeous black tip

If you would like to know more about Master Divers conservation efforts, or our professional training, please get in touch today! We are holding weekly beach cleans near the shop on Tuesday morning, monthly free of charge dive against debris, and have regular conservation presentations, films and eco related quiz nights.