After the success of our dive/road trip south from Brisbane down to Tasmania, Laura and I decided that we should really just complete the east coast and drove up to northern Queensland. The original plan was to drive up to Ayr, just south of Townsville, where with another friend we would finally get to dive the wreck of the Yongala. We managed this part and did four dives there with the excellent Yongala Dive folk. They were a really brilliant bunch and it was handy that they had dorm style accommodation on site. It was after
The following article 'Night Diving: Dos and Don'ts' originally featured in issue of Asian Diver (volume 115, 4/2011) which includes some tips for happy night diving. In the same issue I has an image in the 'Art of Diving' section of a basket star shrimp (Periclimenes lanipes) running around its echinoderm host, taken at Wakatobi Dive Resort in Indonesia.
NIGHT DIVING - DOS AND DON'TS - By Richard Smith (2012)
I've recently returned from another briliant trip to Lembeh Strait in north Sulawesi, Indonesia. We stayed at Lembeh Resort and dived with Critters@Lembeh. They were a really great bunch and we had an amazing time diving with them. Some of the underwater highlights for me during this trip were my first ever zebra seahorse (a colour form of Hippocampus trimaculatus), a mototi octopus (Amphioctopus siamensis) (which advertises it's venomous bite with a pair of bright blue rings either side of the body and occasion
In June 2011 I visited Pico Island in the Azores, which are situated 1500 km west of Portugal in the mid Atlantic. I had been lucky enough to be granted permission by the Azorean government to enter the water with Sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus). This priveledge is limited to professional photographers and supported by my marine biology background. Great care must be taken not to disturb these gentle giants and so we were only on snorkel, not SCUBA. Our daily excursions were organised by Pic
My article 'The Desert's Wet Playground' about diving in the Red Sea has been published in the new issue (114) of Asian Diver. The Arab Spring revolutions of the last few months have severely affected tourism to the area but the large tourist hubs of the Red Sea have been largely unaffected. The Red Sea has spectacular diving opportunities for all experience levels and is well worth a visit!
Last Christmas I went back to Lembeh Strait in north Sulawesi, an area world renowned for its muck diving. My friend Laura came too, she hadn't done any muck diving before but had heard me talking about it. On the flight over I was explaining to her the techniques, the creatures to look for and what muck diving actually is. From this the article 'Muck Diving: Back to Basics' was born. It is in the new issue of Sport Diving magazine and is available throughout Asia and Australia now. The article basically acts as a guide to muck
The following article 'Turtle Tails - The Biology of Sea Turtles' was originally published in issue 2/2011 of Asian Diver magazine:
Turtle Tails - The Biology of Sea Turtles By Richard Smith (© Richard Smith 2011)
The Oceania Dive Expo will be in Brisbane, Australia between Friday 7th and Sunday 9th October 2011 and I am booked to present! My seminar, which is on Saturday 8th October between 4.10 and 4.40pm, is entitled 'The Private Life of Pygmy Seahorses'. I'll be talking about my research on pygmy seahorses and some of the fascinating aspects of their biology that I discovered during my PhD. Check out the website for more information at www.OceaniaDiveExpo.com
On the 1st April 2011 my PhD was officially awarded. I am the first person to have completed a PhD on the biology of pygmy seahorses and I'm excited to share some of my findings. My thesis is entitled 'The Biology and Conservation of Gorgonian-Associated Pygmy Seahorses'. I will be publishing the findings from my thesis in the scientific literature in the coming months so keep checking back or sign up to my blog updates for details. Until then I wanted to share some information and facts about pygmy seahorses: