Sunday, 30 November 2008

Packing Tips for Photographers

From the November, 2008 issue of Scuba Diving Magazine.

Photographers get hit hard with airline overweight fees. Here are five tips and five photo bags to help ease the pain.

It used to be so easy to get to distant dive locations with virtually any amount of camera gear needed to do the job. Load up a dive bag, a clothing bag, maybe a big roller case for topside cameras to go on the airplane with you--then stuff the rest in a giant hard case. Some shooters had different strategies, maybe an Igloo cooler with the lid duct-taped down to make it look like a cargo of dead fish rather than live cameras, hoping to avoid theft. But the common feeling was that overweight was an after-thought, and if we got charged at all, it would be maybe $50. But as Mr. Dylan once sang, "the times they are a-changin'," and as fuel costs force airlines' bottom lines deeper into the red, they pass some of those costs along to their passengers in the form of baggage fees. Underwater photographers get hit especially hard, so for shooters feeling the pinch, here are five tips for packing, planning and navigating baggage restrictions on your next dive trip.

Full article here at : Scuba Diving Magazine - Packing Tips for Photographers

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Kadavu Island forum: Matava Resort - TripAdvisor

Posted on: 1:07 pm, September 03, 2008

Went in November 2007 for a week and absolutely loved it. Once you land it is an hour boat ride to the resort and the boat is very small but the view is spectacular - reminds you of what the first explorers would have seen - so untouched. Maggi welcomes you and takes you to your bure.

Most of them do not have electricity but ours had a light in the main area and the bathroom but we never used them. Anything that needs to plugged in can be done in the office. We dove every day and it was spectacular - my first experience with Manta Rays and there were seven swimming around us - awesome! We took the meal package and enjoyed eating with everyone and the conversations that took place.

Of course had the Kava experience and the Lovo - cooking on rocks. You are welcome to bring your own alcohol and we brought a box of red wine which they kept for us and served it at dinner. As long as you can handle being without your blackberry and laptop this is the place for you.

We recommended to other friends who went this year in June and also thoroughly enjoyed the experience and the diving

Kadavu Island forum: Matava Resort - TripAdvisor

Sunday, 9 November 2008

The Great Fiji Butterflyfish Count November 2008: Results: South Kadavu, Matava Resort

The Great Fiji Butterflyfish Count November 2008

On reefs all across the Fiji Islands, volunteers from schools, universities, conservation organisations, resort and dive operations took part in 30 minute counts of Butterflyfish, as an indicator of biodiversity and coral health.
See for full details and results as they come in.
Results: South Kadavu, Matava Resort:
Alice and James Calvert from Australia 

Alan and Lindsay Coley of the UK

Jone Waitaiti, Matava Dive Guide 
Richard Akhtar, Matava Owner

Helen Sykes, Fiji Coral Reef Monitoring Networkand Reef Check coordinator

Count in progress
Triangular Butterfly 
Cheveroned Butterfly 
Longnosed Butterflies

Across the South Kadavu Dive Sites, 24 of the 27 known Butterflyfish in Fiji were seen. On average 79 Butterflyfish were seen over the 30 minute counting period.
Reef Type
Average # of fish / 30 mins Average # of species
Eagle Rock,
Outer Wall
52 % Hard coral cover
23% Soft coral cover
20 (74%)
Vesi Bay,
Nearshore fringing Reef
38% Hard coral cover
7 % Soft coral cover
14 (52%)
Naiqoro Passage
Deep passage to outer wall
Hard coral gardens
22 (81%)
Japanese Gardens,
Passage side to outer slopes
Rock walls in passage, Hard corals on slopes
17 (63%)
South Kadavu Overall
24 (89%)
Many more species were found on the outer wall sites where there was high hard coral cover, and more variety of coral types. At the inner reef and passage side sites, where there was less hard coral, there were fewer species, and in one case, fewer fish, mainly those who do not depend entirely on corals for food.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

Free Diving in November

manta1 web.jpgFREE DIVING!
Due to a very last minute cancellation of a group of 10 divers, Matava now has a few clear weeks to fill until the end of November.

Therefore we are offering a KILLER deal for divers out there willing to travel at last minute by offering F~R~E~E  D~I~V~I~N~G !

Yes, totally FREE 2 tank morning dives for every full day you stay at Matava until the end of November!
Free diving in Fiji
Dive the wonders of the Great Astrolabe Barrier reef in Kadavu, Fiji and experience pelagics, mantas, sharks and the fabulous hard corals of the 3rd largest barrier reef in the world for the wonderful price of $0!

Just book any bure and quote promo code "NovFreeDive" to redeem this one off deal at Matava!

Email RichardThis e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it at Matava now to secure your booking.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Reef Check Foundation - Auction Home Page - cMarket Fundraising Auction

Reef Check Foundation is getting ready to run an online auction fundraiser!

Starting on November 5, 2008, the Reef Check Foundation will be auctioning off a number of fun and unique items to bid on to raise money for our organization - and the more items we have the more money we can raise, so we're asking for your help!

Reef Check is an international non-profit organization whose mission is to protect and rehabilitate reefs worldwide. Reef Check’s thousands of volunteer citizen scientists in over 90 countries and territories participate in scientific research, education and conservation programs and provide ecologically sound and economically sustainable solutions in partnership with businesses, government agencies and academia.

This auction is being held in conjunction with the Reef Check Foundation's Reef Rescue 2008 Gala on November 15th at the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California. This year's gala is to be a celebration of the International Year of the Reef 2008 and will honor pioneering IMAX filmmaker Greg MacGillivray.

Reef Check Foundation - Auction Home Page - cMarket Fundraising Auction

Sunday, 2 November 2008

Beyond Blue - Marine research, conservation and expeditions

Beyond Blue is a unique fusion between marine scientists and environmental journalists in which daily discoveries being made about our marine world are brought to life in an exciting and dynamic format.

We are currently developing a fresh web site which will not only combine the information available at Beyond Blue with our growing community base, but also integrate seamlessly with our constantly evolving online network, which includes organisations such as SAMPLA, and the upcoming Carcharias.

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Beyond Blue - Marine research, conservation and expeditions