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diver dave1

Member Since 02 Mar 2008
Offline Last Active Apr 06 2017 03:41 AM

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Belize trip report, diving from Aggressor IV

08 December 2016 - 04:00 PM

Recently back from a trip to Belize reefs aboard the Aggressor IV.

It was a great trip overall.  Hurricane Earl removed the wood for the dock the ship uses.  They still moor at the steel pillars there but you cannot walk to the ship.  So you meet at a hotel as a group and they ferry you to the boat.  It works just fine but causes boredom at the hotel when you wish you were on the boat.


This boat is quite nice with good sized rooms.  I loved having a room on the main deck.  The layout of the boat is really efficient overall.  The camera tables are adequate though if many took DSLR’s it would be crowded.  There were only 2 of them on board so camera space was quite sufficient.

The food was very good to excellent and plenty of it.  Dinner was usually 2 selections of meat or fish so no trouble finding something to your liking.


The crew and service was really special.  When you start the dive, you walk down to the dive platform without your fins or camera.  As you stand on the platform geared up, they are at your feet, putting on your fins.  All you do is move your feet into the fin as they hold it open for you.

When you finish the dive and hang at the 15ft safety stop bar, they swim down to you and take your camera rig up for you.  When you get to the ladder and have a good hand grip, they remove your fins for you underwater.  No worries about dropping a fin, bending over or troubles stepping on the ladder with fins.  When you finish your hot shower on the dive deck, they are standing there with a warm, dry towel marked for your use only.  They wrap you in it and give you a shoulder massage as you stand there.  The towels are cleaned and dried for each dive.

My best dive service experience previously was Ocean Frontiers on Grand Cayman.  The Aggressor IV service beat that easily.


Diving was excellent for Carib. diving.  Weather was not so cooperative.  It was sunny one aftn only.  We only saw one sunset.  Cloudy the rest of the time with some heavy rains from time to time.  Usually not good lighting for good backlighting of reef structures for photos.  Often lots of particles generating backscatter around the reef top area.  Lots of fish life and lots of juvenile fish.

Sharks at Lighthouse reef on all dives.  They usually patrolled at 100 ft or so but once in a while, came by at the reef top.  Toadfish on all Turneffe late aftn and night dives but not always easy to find.  They were easy to hear.


Overall, loved the trip and would do it again and recommend it to others.

You can see photos at this link at shiningseastudio.com




Behavior question on remora

10 November 2016 - 06:12 PM

Just back from a trip to the outer reefs of Belize.  We saw remora attaching or trying to on stoplight parrotfish.  It was repeated on several dives, both Turneffe and Lighthouse reefs and only on those parrotfish, final stage.  Two photos are below.

Sometimes the remora was not attached and the parrotfish was swimming erratically, seemingly trying to elude his 'guest'.  The remora would slip from side to side, trying to stay on the side away from the diver.

Sometimes the remora was attached and on the bottom of the parrotfish.


Sharks were present essentially all Lighthouse dive and no signs of remora on the ones I saw.






Is this something normal?  In 25+ yrs of diving, it was first for me.

I did not where to post this on the site.  If I selected wrong, my apology.


Diver Dave

Austrailian diving in Feb and March

18 September 2016 - 05:05 PM

Looks like I could be attending a wedding in the Sydney area in late Feb.  I have a non-diving wife with me so diving the liveaboards is not an option.

Where would be a good dive area for a week of diving? 


Should I travel up to the Byron Bay area?

Or better to go further south and try for leafy Sea Dragons?

Visit Heron Island or similar locations?

Something else?


This might be my only trip to AUS in my lifetime so want to make it count.


Thanks for suggestions in advance.


Diver Dave