At any Age

A perfect hobby to age with.

Real or Fake - Lioness

Toy from Petco.jpg

Is It Real or Is It Fake?

Answer:  Happy April Fools is Fake!   

A plasticus Iioness is a plastic toy from Petco. 

Shark Facts - Largest and Smallest

Size: The spined pygmy shark, a deep-sea shark, is one of the smallest at only about 7-8 inches, while the whale shark is the largest shark, and fish, at about 50 feet in length. Although lifespan varies by shark species, most sharks are long-lived and generally tend to live for 20-30 years. Species like the spiny dogfish and the whale shark are believed to live for over 100 years!

Yellow Fin Grouper

Yellow Fin Grouper
The body is greenish-olive or bright red. Oval groups of dark spots form horizontal rows on the body. Outer third of pectoral fins are bright yellow. Small bright red spots are found on lower parts of large individuals.They commonly grow to 20 lbs. Live in coastal reef shallows to modestly deep offshore waters. Juveniles found in mangroves and sea grass beds.  Feeds on fishes and squid. Can often be seen at cleaning stations. 

The yellowfin grouper is a hearty fish, often reaching 10 kg. It is considered quite tasty and is one of the more popular Gulf game fishes. This species is one of the main catches in the fishing industry in Bermuda. It is considered over fished, and is currently threatened in several areas.

Alien Spacecraft? - Real or Fake

Answer:  Real - Bioluminescent Dinoflagellate Plankton

In 1753, the first modern dinoflagellates were described by Henry Baker as "Animalcules which cause the Sparkling Light in Sea Water".  Sometimes referred to as "Fire Algae" it is recognized usually in darkness as it has the appearance of blue glowing glitter swirling in the water when disturbed. Truly a wonder of nature. This particular Dinoflagellate looks earily like an alien spacecraft. Photo by Joe Scott

Sweetlips Grunt


The oriental sweetlips (Plectorhinchus vittatus), is a species of grunt. Closely related to the snappers, grunts have smaller mouths and teeth and thicker fleshy lips hence the name sweetlips.

They may also grind their teeth together when caught, emitting a grunting sound, hence the name grunt. 

Juvenile oriental sweetlips have an attractive brown-and-white and yellow mottled pattern. They have a curious wriggling style of swimming in which the whole body undulates, which does not completely disappear in the adults.

They can be found in found in fresh, brackish, and salt waters and tend to be in medium to large schools. Divers often are able to approach slowly and get very close as they are not very skiddish. 


Buoyancy Control


Buoyancy Control is a little bit science and a whole lot of practice. Here are a few tips to help you master the skill. We have monthly classes on Buoyancy.

Note: So many factors affect your buoyancy that are impossible to control. So we do the best we can. Example would be the buoyancy of your suit. At 10 feet deep it is different than at 20 feet.  Air in your BCD (even if you think it is empty) changes volume and lift every foot you descend. How deeply you inhale, the layers you have worn, the temperature of the water, the size tank and how full it is or isn't. 

Try this in a pool.  Adjust your weights to as little as you can and still stay on the bottom. The fin pivot is when your fin tips are touching the bottom and you rise from flat on your belly to about a 45 degree angle just by inhaling. When you exhale you sink back to your belly all the while your fin tips never leave the bottom. Then practice rising and falling under control using only your breathing. Try holding still.

Now, after mastering the fin pivot, try the hover. Cross your legs, grabbing your left fin with your right hand and your right fin with your left hand. Inhale just enough to rise off the bottom. Control your breathing to try and stay in one place off the bottom. 

With another diver with you in the pool, practice the hover and pass a weight between you. So, you are hovering just fine and you are handed a 3 lb weight. You adjust by inhaling more deeply to become just buoyant enough to offset the 3 lbs. When you regain your control then you hand it back. Then 4 lbs, then 5 lbs. 

Have fun learning.

Real or Fake - Stubby

Is It Real or Is It Fake?

Answer:  Real

Googly Eyed Stubby Squid. It looks like it could be a cartoon character, but it's real. Researchers from the Nautilus exploration vessel were cruising along the deep sea floor off California's coast when they came upon the bright purple creature with giant, stuffed-animal-like eyes.  "Whoa!" they exclaim in unison. "It looks fake," one says. And those googly eyes? "It looks like they just painted them on," another says, to peals of laughter.

Clown Triggerfish


Clown triggerfish (Balistoides conspicillum), also known as the bigspotted triggerfish, are demersal marine fish belonging to the family Balistidae, or commonly called triggerfish.

The clown triggerfish grows up to 1 1/2 feet (50 cm). Its body has a stocky appearance, oval shape. The first dorsal fin is composed of three spines, one of which is longer and stronger. It is erectile and hidden in a dorsal furrow. This set of dorsal spines composes a trigger system.  The larger spine is used to lock into rocks making it harder for a predator to attack. If you pushed on this larger spine trying to get it to lay down, you would fail. Yet if you simply and lightly push the smallest spine like a trigger to lay down then the larger ones would fold as well.

Trigger's have a varied diet and eat mostly molluscs, echinoderms and crustaceans.

The clown trigger fish is widely distributed throughout the tropical and subtropical waters of the Indian ocean and the western Pacific Ocean, however they can also be found in the caribbean as well.  It is most commonly found along external reef slopes with clear water up to depths of  250 feet (75 m).