Dive Log inc Sportdiving

Divers are modern day explorers and have made enormous contributions to scientific discovery and knowledge. Who knows how many more species of Pygmy Sea Horses are waiting to be discovered? The 21st Century is certainly the new age of exploration of the sea. Underwater photography is a huge part of the driving force behind this new Golden age of exploration and discovery of our magnificent Blue Planet. Supplementing teaching scuba diving When I earned my Underwater Instructor rating in 1982, I immediately used my underwater photos as a teaching aide. I developed my own Dangerous Marine Biology lectures as well as Marine life Identification and dive skills. There are many great Dive Instructors who use Underwater Photography to enhance their teaching. You probably had one that did just that! Running Marine Biology courses I began to develop my Marine Biology course for Scuba Divers course more than twenty years ago. The entire course was based on theory lectures supplemented by slide shows of marine specimens tailored to my local dive sites. The joke is on us! As a general rule, everyone hates underwater photographers, mostly in a good humoured and friendly way. We are the ones vilified for all destruction of the reef, all delays on the dive boat. Each and every stuff up that happens on a dive results directly from the underwater paparazzi. I get the blame for anything and everything that impinges on the quality of the days’ diving. Sometimes, I think that dive knives are just for stabbing underwater photographers in the back. (This is a joke!) Maybe, I just have a lot of really grumpy dive buddies. In fact, the implication here is that if you do not carry an underwater camera, you are perfect in every way, a model diver and a most sanctimonious and holier than thou perfect specimen of the underwater explorer. Personally, I have broad shoulders and do not mind the jovial nature of deprecation afforded to us by non-photographers. (If you are not sure, this humorous section is a light hearted response to divers slagging off at underwater photographers!) Other benefits Photography is used in many other areas of diving such as: • Shark research. • Giving public Lectures Preparing talks. • Running underwater photo courses. Most of all, underwater photography is about the Celebration of life. The pure joy of capturing the beauty of marine creatures and sharing them with friends and the general public is a powerful tool for conservation of our marine life and sharing our love of marine life. At this point in time, with all the destruction of environments and over fishing and deforestation, we need this force for conservation more than ever. There are lots of tips and useful notes on my website www.mikescotland.com.au and don’t forget to check out my instagram account scuba_mikes top to bottom: This Male Sergeant Baker, Aulopus purpurissatus , shows the long flag on the dorsal fin. They are related to Lizard fish. Photographs of nudibranchs enable you to identify the correct name of the specimen more accurately. This is Halgerda sp. The Purple Lined Nembrotha, Nembrotha purpurlineata is a predator on Solitary Flask Ascidians. Identification of Manta Rays is done by photographing the unique spot pattern on the underbelly.

www.divelog.net.au | ISSUE 375 | OCTOBER 2019 | DIVE LOG Australasia inc. Sportdiving Magazine | 49

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