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Reef Report for Thursday, October 26, 2000

What Dreams Are Made of Down Under

First-time visitors to Australia Burt and Maggie from the United Kingdom were practically leaping out of their wet suits with excitement this week upon completing their open water learn-to-dive course. © Great Barrier Reef Enterprises In pursuit of a lifelong dream, Burt and Maggie (both in their late 50’s), chose Cairns as their destination to learn to scuba dive. And we couldn’t be happier that they did! I was tickled to see them Tuesday afternoon after they just got off the boat. They were brimming over with stories about the varied and beautiful coral and fish species that they saw. It’s tales like these that rejuvenate my enthusiasm for diving and remind me how lucky we are to have what we have in our own front yard!

What else is new and interesting? Well, it seems a little busy on the shark front this week. Divers onboard Passions of Paradise had a close encounter with five reef sharks in the first five minutes of their first dive! Penny from the Passions crew noted that the word shark often evokes feelings of fear, while this species of shark is actually very shy and quite harmless. I have no hesitation in agreeing with her. On another dive boat, two divers onboard Reeftel came up for air babbling that they had seen a Whale Shark. This is very unusual for this time of year and couldn’t be confirmed, though some think it may have been a Reef Shark instead. Kim on Reeftel reported 15-20 metres visibility at Milln Reef. Deckie Kerry onboard My Way also noted six pairs of White Tip reef sharks at Cod Hole this week. An easy 25 metres of visibility was had by the divers, and plenty of Potato Cod were around to keep the dive interesting. These typically friendly giant fish often come very close to the divers looking for food scraps and perhaps a little adventure.

Skipper Heinz onboard Scubapro raved about conditions this week. Another calm sea and loads of sunshine was enjoyed by all towards the end of the week. The weather people predict light 10–15 knot sea breezes and a few isolated showers over the weekend. If you’re out diving this weekend keep your eyes open for the busy reef sharks and enjoy the treat!

(C) Pro Dive Cairns The weekly reef report is written by Sue-Anne Chapman of Pro Dive Cairns, who compiles them from the many conversations she 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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