Pulau Hantu - A celebration of marine life

Secret lives and secret worlds hidden in Singapore's most popular coral reef.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Last & First (Day 01)

Today was the 3rd and final (formally at least) practical for the trainees of the Reef Xplore! Program. The programe, which is intended to train guides to lead awareness trips for the public, is a joint project by the Blue Water Volunteers, Gill Divers and the Hantu Bloggers.

After 3 weeks of theory lessons, a written test, and 3 dives (at least) later, the trainees are closing the gap between being passive to active champions for our local reefs. Once certified of their competency, the guides will be able to assist in dive trips organised by either of the 3 organisations involved in this project. We're looking forward to setting the first public trip soon! So stay tuned to this Blog!

Reef Xplore! trainees have been trained in 2 sites for this course, Pulau Hantu, and Kusu Island.

This Saturday morning, the dive was to be had at Kusu. What were formerlly trainers (Tse Lyn and myself) turned to "clueless newbie local divers" and gave our future educators a chance at leading the show!

Despite some challenges (like the usual lost buddy), and a few small incompetencies here and there, these are some of the cool and amazing things that were on offer for our guides and the clueless newbies! (Yes! That's right! I've got a new u/w camera! Now, LOTS more u/w pix for you. I have kept them out and away for so long, so it's great to be back on track again! Whoopee!)

This is the first time I've seen an allied cowrie on the seabed! What this little critter was doing amidst strong currents, was leaving its whip (on the left of the picture) to (quite briskly!) traverse the silty seabed for several centimeters before coming to the next whip (not in frame). Gee Whizz! It was a bold creature! Made itself very conspicuous... a dangerous thing...