Sodwana Bay News
Do some brittle stars care for their young? By Jennifer Olbers
Written by Eve    Tuesday, 02 September 2014 12:54    PDF Print E-mail

Between 1999 & 2001, a number of expeditions were undertaken to the KZN coast by a delegation of Belgian and South African echinoderm and seaweed experts in a collaborative biodiversity study. One of the many aims of the trip was to make the first biodiversity assessment of the echinoderms in an area which is historically known to be under-sampled by biologists. The expedition reported 51 new distribution records bringing the total known echinoderm species occurring on the KZN coast to 181. However, as with many of these marine expeditions, many interesting specimens are collected and create many additional questions that are often left unanswered. One such question was a small brittle star that was found with its arms inserted into the genital pouches (Picture 1) of the larger Blotch-star brittle star (Ophiocoma brevipes). The Blotch-star brittle star (Picture 2) is very common in KZN and is known to occur from Kosi Bay to Aliwal Shoal but the question remained. Was the smaller brittle star a new species? Was it just being baby-sat by a different species? Do they live together in a symbiotic relationship? Or was it a baby Blotch-star brittle star?

Read more...  [Do some brittle stars care for their young? By Jennifer Olbers] Last Updated ( Thursday, 04 September 2014 11:28 )
 
In Search of the Tanzanian Coelacanth – By Eve Marshall
Written by Eve    Thursday, 14 August 2014 10:06    PDF Print E-mail

It’s no easy feat to get 6 trimix divers from SA, England and the USA plus a film crew, enough kit and cylinders for 2 rebreathers and 4 open circuit divers, plus enough helium and oxygen to spend two weeks diving trimix off of the coast of Tanga in Tanzania.  Our expeditions purpose in 2012 was to search for and film the Tanzanian Coelacanth population for SA’s film production company “Earth Touch” they were making a documentary for National Geographic to be called "Dinofish".  We had filmed the first part in Sodwana Bay with Dr Richard Pyle (Pyle deep stop fame) earlier in the year and had our fingers crossed for a successful expedition.

Heading the dive team was our own Peter Timm the man that would find them in the unexplored depths if anyone could, Robert Whitton – Dr Pyle’s technician and self proclaimed fish nerd from Hawaii, Dan Stevenson UK deep diving camera man, Eve Marshall, Werner Nell and Andre Willemse deep divers and back up support.

Read more...  [In Search of the Tanzanian Coelacanth – By Eve Marshall] Last Updated ( Thursday, 14 August 2014 11:28 )
 
Peter Timm - A Legend in our Time
Written by Administrator    Saturday, 21 June 2014 12:35    PDF Print E-mail

This week, Triton lost its leader, creator and a vital, inspiring, powerful and generous man who deeply touched so many lives. Peter Timm was a partner, father, brother, friend, dive buddy, instructor, skipper, boss, mentor, teacher, electrician, builder, pilot, mechanic, plumber, photographer, honorary officer and citizen scientist. An exceptional man who did so many things for so many people. Capable, innovative and determined, Peter and his team created a place and a business that brought so much happiness, beautiful memories, great energy, direction and personal growth. He loved to learn and he was a natural teacher. So many people experienced his generosity of spirit, time and incredible skills. He also had a way with words - not just in terms of the “Peter Timm woordeboek” but in his way of making things better, of making you laugh and stretching individuals to achieve beyond what they thought was possible. He was a man of action and empowered and inspired others, leaving a legacy in diving, discovery, marine research and human relationships.

Peter died still believing he could fix anything and who could blame him. He fixed so much. He also died doing what he loved. He loved helping people and he was motivated by a challenge. He was a competent and very experienced technical diver and he ascribed to the spirit of trimix diving expressed by fellow deep diver Forrest Young …..

Peter and the Coelacanth“In this, some might find me incautious, but exploration always has had an element of risk and in the end, we are all mortal and it is how we carry on our lives during this brief existence that makes all the difference as to who we really are. Rest assured that we take

every step to make our projects as safe as possible but in the end, in the depths, it is between us and the deep blue sea.”

Peter loved and lived these words.
Written by the “Baby Doctor” Dr Kerry Sink

“Eve, Rolleen (his business partner and co-founder of Triton, his daughters, Vanessa and Jade, and the Triton staff thank everyone for their kind condolences. Peter’s legacy will live on at Triton and we thank you for your continued support. Triton will be re-open for business on 1 July”

Last Updated ( Thursday, 26 June 2014 07:41 )
 
Launch of new sea science and species mapping project makes a splash
Written by Eve    Thursday, 27 March 2014 13:26    PDF Print E-mail

Cape Town, 18 March 2014.

Marine biologists, students, citizen scientists and marine decision makers have joined forces in a new collaboration to unlock marine biodiversity knowledge and opportunities in South Africa. The SeaKeys project aims to collect and distribute genetic, species and ecosystem information to support wise decision making in the marine environment. This information is vital as expanding marine activities such as seabed mining, oil and gas activities and alternative energy initiatives compete for space with established fisheries and recreational use of the country's seas. Core to the project are several new marine citizen science projects that invite contributions from the public. by Dr Kerry Sink

Read more...  [Launch of new sea science and species mapping project makes a splash] Last Updated ( Wednesday, 09 April 2014 10:23 )
 
iSimangaliso’s oceanic heritage by Dr Kerry Sink
Written by Eve    Friday, 28 February 2014 15:05    PDF Print E-mail

After spending nine months attached to a coelacanth, anArgos Mini-PAT satellite tag was recovered by Triton staff offshore and 16 kilometres south of Jesser Point at the Sodwana Bay node of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. The coelacanth, the 26th of 32 individuals known from South Africa’s first World Heritage Site was tagged by Trimix Divers on the 13 May 2013 in Jesser Canyon, 12 km south of the site where the tag popped up at 1am on 8 February 2014.

Lights, Camera, Action

Read more...  [iSimangaliso’s oceanic heritage by Dr Kerry Sink] Last Updated ( Wednesday, 09 April 2014 10:36 )
 
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