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Reef Report for Friday, January 3, 2003

Santa Spotted Diving on the Reef

By now we should all be over New Year celebrations and ready to put into action our new years resolutions. Hopefully learning to dive is one of them. Cairns locals and visitors alike are fortunate; not only are there a multitude of courses to choose from, but students get to dive on the Great Barrier Reef as a part of their course. © Quicksilver Dive Check out the listing of dive courses online at this link.


This week divers on Passions of Paradise were excited to find a school of hump-headed parrot fish grazing on outcrops of coral at Paradise Reef. Large schools of fusiliers and sergeant majors were everywhere. A large Triton Triggerfish was found building its nest. Divers saw several turtles, black-tipped reef sharks were spotted gliding along the wall, as was a juvenile Maori Wrasse.

Reef Magic visited Saxon Reef and found the conditions were just great, with the sun shining and the winds dropping right off. Certified divers had a spectacular drift dive along the wall with an abundance of fish life, turtles and some pelagic baitfish hunters circling overhead.

Port Douglas:

At Opal and Tongue Reefs, Calypso put on a great Christmas day trip for all divers and snorkelers onboard. There has been plenty on marine life to see, including stingrays, Maori wrasse and reef sharks.

Passengers on Poseidon also enjoyed excellent diving and snorkeling conditions with a very special sighting of a 5-metre Black Marlin that passed underneath the vessel at Agincourt Reef. This is a very rare sighting as Marlin generally stay in deeper waters off the continental shelf.

Well, you would think that Santa was already busy enough around this time of the year, but on Diversity at the Cod Hole Santa was spotted feeding a Potato Cod on Christmas day. Also coming in for a visit were a school of 20 or so grey reef whalers on a drift dive and loggerhead and hawksbill turtles being sighted on a night dive.

This weekend is looking like the winds will pick up on Sunday and possibly be between 15-20 knots. So Saturday is looking the best day for a dive. As always, safe diving!

Steve Brady

(C) Pro Dive Cairns This weekly reef report was written by Steve Brady of Pro Dive Cairns, who compiles them from the dive trips he takes, as well as the many conversations he has with divers, dive instructors, captains, and others in the Cairns dive community. The report is published weekly in the Cairn Post, the local daily paper and appears here thanks to the courtesy of Pro Dive Cairns.

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