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Reef Report for Saturday, September 14, 2002

Overcast, Smovercast, the Diving is Great!

Well regardless of the overcast conditions from time to time over last week-end here in Cairns the reef still shined and produced some of its best all round conditions. It looks like the fantastic weather is still here to stay, for a while longer anyway. © Great Barrier Reef Enterprises

This week scuba diving on Green Island was full of very interesting sightings for folks aboard the Ocean Free. Dive sites visited during the week was King's Cross, at the edge of Green Island Reef and sy yjr Flying Fish Mooring.. With visibility 15m plus and water temperature averaging 25 degrees made the dive conditions were nearly perfect. Introductory divers were very excited when they saw two large camouflage groupers and a colourful school of yellowtail fusiliers. They were also exited when shown a couple of spinecheek anemone fish in the shallow waters of the reef. Certified divers enjoyed seeing a small juvenile Batfish for the first time and also enjoyed taking photos of a Whitetip Reef Shark and a group of chevron barracuda that swam past.

Divers onboard Tusa Dive enjoyed up to 30 metres visibility during the week, with excellent weather conditions. Passengers onboard Calypso out of Port Douglas had a wonderful week snorkeling and diving at Opal and Tongue Reefs. With 20 metres visibility for most of the week both divers and snorkelers swam with turtles, lagoon rays and barracuda! Passengers also enjoyed watching dolphins cruising out to and back from the reef.

Reef Magic Cruises again were able to show passengers a variety of different reef sites during the week, covering Thetford, Saxon, Hastings and Millne Reefs. Conditions were 20 metres visibility with plenty of sunshine and mild winds. Sightings again of a Humpback Whale and calf were witnessed on the way out to Hastings Reef during with a school of dolphins spotted by divers. Our friendly reef sharks were out as well, accompanied by a variety of turtles and marine life. A group of introductory scuba divers were lucky enough to see a Shovel-nosed Shark busily sifting through the sandy ocean bottom. Shovel-nosed sharks are also called Shovel-nosed rays, and can grow up to 2.7 m in length. They are common on sand flats on the GBR and also closer to shore in estuaries. They mainly rest during the daytime, often cover themselves with sand and will allow a close approach.

Taka Dive enjoyed also some amazing weather conditions at the Code Hole and Osprey reef during the week. Divers onboard were not disappointed. A huge (2m) Potato Code mesmerised divers for quite some time. © Great Barrier Reef Enterprises Crystal from Prodive enjoyed a great day diving out with Passions of Paradise last week-end and saw sea whips, nudibranchs, feather stars and my personal favourite clown fish playing in anemones.

Well for us week-end divers the winds may be picking up but hey…it sure beats mowing the lawn or watching the tube!

(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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