NEWS

Coming to Coral Reefs 2: Jelly Bots

Two days ago DIVERNET reported on “Bluebot” robotic fish as a means of carrying out environmental monitoring of coral reefs. Now we have news of another robotic approach to working in fragile underwater environments such as reefs or archaeological sites - based not on schools of fish but on “pulse-jet” animals such as jellyfish and squid. Read more...

Long solo dive rings alarm bells

A search and rescue operation was launched off New Zealand’s South Island when scuba diver Kazushi Noiri was reported missing. What was unusual was that the 34-year-old nurse hadn’t realised he was in any difficulties. Read more...

New: electric eels hunting in packs

Electric eels have always been thought to be solitary night-hunters, but now they have been observed for the first time working together in large groups to kill prey. Individual eels of the new species being studied are able to emit more electricity than any other known creature - enough to power 10 light-bulbs. Read more...

Ocean repels plastics using seagrass balls

Scuba divers enjoy the biodiversity of seagrass locations, which can provide food, shelter and breeding habitats for turtles, dugongs, seahorses and countless other creatures. Seagrass also exchanges vast quantities of carbon dioxide for oxygen, improves water quality and protects coasts from erosion. Read more...

Octopus selfie scoops Ocean Art pool

The shot chosen as “Best of Show” in the ninth Ocean Art underwater photography competition comes from Australia, and is described as “a once-in-a-lifetime moment of an octopus taking a selfie with the help of the photographer and his curious family in the background”.  Read more...

Diving campaigners welcome Mozambique action

“Sweeping protections” for threatened whale sharks, manta rays and all mobula species is how Mozambique-based campaigning body the Marine Megafauna Foundation (MMF) has described new commercial-fishing laws that came into effect in the Indian Ocean nation yesterday (8 January).  Read more...

BDMLR completes first UK orca rescue

A stranded orca has been rescued in Orkney by volunteers from the conservation charity British Divers Marine Life Rescue. Such incidents involving orcas are “incredibly rare”, says BDMLR, which believes this was the first time the organisation had been able to refloat one successfully in the UK. Read more...

Conception-inspired law passed in USA

The dumping of outgoing President Trump’s veto of the US National Defence Authorisation Act has unblocked the passage of commercial boat-safety legislation that had been introduced after the fatal Conception dive-liveaboard fire off California. Read more...

Lifeboat volunteers honoured

Sixty-nine-year-old Phil Eaglen has been a lifeboat volunteer since 1967, and remains a vital part of the shore crew at Wells RNLI. The emergency mechanic for the Norfolk station, he was described as the “backbone” of the operation when he was honoured for a half-century of service in 2019. Read more...

MBE for top Navy diver

One of the Royal Navy’s most experienced underwater bomb-disposal experts has been recognised in the New Year’s Honours list for his “inspirational leadership and operational achievements”. He has been made an MBE. Read more...

‘Star Wars’ seals go ultrasonic

Weddell seals can produce chirps, whistles and trills at frequencies beyond human hearing range, according to new research. Weddells are highly vocal, but the ability to emit such ultrasonic calls has never before been identified in any of the 33 known species of seal, sea-lion or walrus. Read more...

Big Blue beckons in March

Pharaoh Dive Club owners Clare and Steve Rattle have been working and diving around the Egyptian Red Sea for nearly 30 years and run the popular Roots Red Sea centre which, as they fairly say, put the town of El Quseir on the map. Read more...

Freediver Stig smashes ocean distance record

As a breath-hold time it was relatively short, certainly for Stig Severinsen, but a recent horizontal dive by the veteran Danish freediver has smashed a previous distance record by 25m and has just been featured as “Record of the Day” by Guinness World Records (GWR). Read more...