News from issue 156 Oct/Nov – international

Dive Munda Wins Diving Company of the Year Award

Dive Munda, the South Pacific’s newest SSI Instructor Training Centre, has recently been awarded the Diving Company of the Year Award by Luxury Travel Guide, Global Awards 2016. This prestigious award recognises excellence in service, employee satisfaction, marketing and branding, local knowledge and cultural understanding.

Scuba Divers Provide Data for Science

Scientists from the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) in Scotland took a range of decompression computers on dives alongside scientific instruments, and showed that the results tallied. Scientists collected more than 7,500 dive records from around the world via the Dive Into Science website. The new data is particularly valuable in highly changeable coastal environments, where many dives occur, as well as in areas that are rarely sampled by other methods. According to the Dive Into Science project, which is funded by the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the extra data could prove crucial in the efforts to understand and predict the effects of our changing climate.

Read the full report here: http://tinyurl.com/jmmz9a7

Whale Sharks Added to Endangered Species Red List

Whale shark by Tim Nicholson.

Whale shark by Tim Nicholson.

The new IUCN Red List reveals that growing human pressures on whale sharks and slender hammerhead sharks are putting these species at an increasing risk of extinction. Both the shark species are now listed as Endangered.

Numbers of whale sharks (Rhincodon typus), the world’s largest fish, have more than halved over the last 75 years as these slow-moving sharks continue to be fished and killed by ship propellers. Whale sharks continue to be fished, especially in southern China and Oman. As whale sharks and tuna are often found together, the sharks are frequently caught by tuna fishing boats.

Unregulated fishing is also behind the fast-falling numbers of the distinctive slender hammerhead shark (Eusphyra blochii), whose shape makes it easily get tangled up in fishing nets. This species has moved from Near Threatened to Endangered on the IUCN Red List.

Scuba News; read more: http://tinyurl.com/h772d6n

400-year-old Greenland Shark ‘Longest-Living Vertebrate’

Greenland sharks are now the longest-living vertebrates known on Earth, scientists say. Researchers used radiocarbon dating to determine the ages of 28 of the animals, and estimated that one female was about 400 years old. The team found that the sharks grow at just 1cm a year and reach sexual maturity at about the age of 150.

The research is published in the journal Science. Lead author Julius Nielsen, a marine biologist from the University of Copenhagen, said: “We had our expectations that we were dealing with an unusual animal, but I think everyone doing this research was very surprised to learn the sharks were as old as they were.”

BBC; read more: http://tinyurl.com/zdth8ou

Ancient Roman Treasure Trove Found off Coast of Caesarea

roman treasureA treasure trove of ancient artifacts that sank when a merchant ship went down off the coast of Caesarea some 1,600-years ago was recently discovered, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Monday. The IAA called the find the biggest treasure uncovered in at least 30 years.

Two divers discovered the artifacts while diving in the Mediterranean Sea just off the Caesarea coast prior to Passover last month. The divers, Ran Feinstein and Ofer Ra’anan, both from Ra’anana, immediately informed the IAA of their discovery, as is required by law.

Jerusalem Post; read more: http://tinyurl.com/z6ktsw6

E-boat, S-102, Found in Black Sea

One of the German ‘E-boats’ – Schnellboot S-204, 1945. Source: Wikipedia/Public Domain.

One of the German ‘E-boats’ – Schnellboot S-204, 1945. Source: Wikipedia/Public Domain.

 

Recreational divers located the located the remains of a WWII German ‘Schnellboot’ lying in forty feet of water in the Black Sea near Crimea. The Russian Military have undertaken initial salvage on the vessel.

The boat, S-102, was used by the Germans during WWII to attack and sink British supply ships causing the loss of thousands of tons of desperately needed supplies in war-torn Britain. The ‘Schnellboot’, or as it was known to the Allies, the E-Boat, was operated by the Kriegsmarine during the war.

War History Online, read more: http://tinyurl.com/hnm7v6y

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