Marlin Madness Trailer

on a recent trip to Tonga we managed to hook this monster. have a look at the teaser i made above and the full youtube clip below. enjoy!

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humpback whales in tonga 2014

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on july 26 i flew with some friends down to the Kingdom of Tonga to experience one of the most memorable dives of my lifetime. words cannot express the thrill and excitement of being amongst the oceans’ most magnificent creatures – the mighty humpback whale. every august and september the whales leave the cold antarctic waters and migrate north to the warm 24 deg C waters of Tonga to frolic and play in the tropical blue paradise waters. thanks to Masa Takashima from tonga-world.com and his team, we were able to swim and film/photograph these magnificent creatures. these are some of the photos i captured from my dive. enjoy.
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olsob, whale sharks

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last week, i went to cebu and stayed at yoshi hirata’s resort in cebu (mactan) club paraiso / pcom dream. yoshi is a marine biologist who moved from tokyo to the philippines to start up his own dive operation. he is the #1 world premiere whale shark photographer (published by the likes of national geographic and BBC) and not only is he among the world’s best marine photographers, he is also a fantastic chef!  he arranged for us to dive with the resident whale sharks that frequent the shallow waters of oslob, 3 hours south of cebu. the following are some shots i got of these gentle giants. we encountered around 6 of them on 2 dives with the largest being around 10m (over 30 feet) long. i took these shots with the 5d mark iii in natural light with a nauticam NA-5DMIII underwater housing and ultra wide angle canon 16-35mm f/2.8 L II USM lens. click the image for full size.

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hippocampus bargibanti

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i just returned from anilao, in batangas, philippines testing out my new nauticam NA-5DMKIII housing for my canon 5D Mark III DSLR camera. it was my first attempt at super macro photography and was terrific fun. one of my favourite macro finds (i think i can speak for most divers) is the ever shy pygmy seahorse (scentific name hippocampus bargibanti). these tiny creatures measure around the size of your pinky fingernail and are generally found well camouflaged amongst soft corals and gorgonian sea fans. i found this little guy (pictured above) hiding amongst a sea fan with around 6 other of his (or her…i’m still learning to tell the difference) companions! an adult can measure as short as 13 mm in length – that’s around 1/2 an inch! pygmy seahorses are unique in that they breathe through a single gill slit on the back of their heads, as opposed to the more common seahorse that has gill slits on both sides of its head. but similar to the common seahorse, the males brood and take care of their young. i took this photo while in anilao with my canon 5d mark III DSLR inside a nauticam NA-5DMKIII housing, dual inon Z240 strobes, f11, 1/125 sec, canon 100mm f2.8L macro IS USM lens. – jeremy

more new divers: connie, michael, ray, candace, maggie & adrian!

last week i was back in the sunny philippines in puerto galera teaching another group of divers all from hong kong. we escaped the huge torrential rains that plagued the hong kong pearl river delta and spent just under a week in oriental mindoro enjoying the magnificent sunshine, diving, mango shakes (and yummy korean food) at song of joy dive resort in puerto galera – where i usually hold my open water check out courses in the philippines. connie, michael and ray finished their open water licenses early on, while candace and maggie joined later to finish theirs. adrian moved up to the advanced open water diver level. despite seeing only one green sea turtle we still managed to spot all sorts of other weird and wonderful creatures underwater. it never rained once and the diving was great. congratulations to all the new divers – dive safe and let’s do it again!

congratulations carmen & kevin

two of my friends from hong kong sadly were re-posted (is that a word?) to singapore only having completed half of their PADI open water scuba diving course. we finally found time to hop over to sunny redang in malaysia to finish off the rest of their open water dives. with the help of one of my instructor friends down there, (shout out to Cola!) we got them finished. congratulations carmen & kevin. you’re much closer to the warmer waters down in singapore but we miss you up here in hongkers. congratulations and dive safe!

adrian, vic, johnston, zoe & thorpe – new PADI divers!

the last week of september found me once again in puerto galera, philippines for another terrific dive certification trip. this time i went with colleagues from my airline, Cathay Pacific Airways and partner airline, Dragonair. pictured above left to right, congratulations go out to Adrian (Cathay 747-400 pilot), Victoria (Cathay 777 pilot), myself as their certifying instructor, Johnston (Cathay 777 pilot) and  Zoe (Dragonair A320 pilot) for earning their PADI Open Water Diver licenses. Thorpe, also a Cathay 777 pilot (the one taking the above photo and pictured below) also completed his PADI Advanced Open Water license along with Zoe as his buddy. this photo was taken just after a refreshing afternoon rainshower passed through as we were enjoying a bbq picnic on a small beach called Friday’s. the divers had just completed their compass navigation snorkel swim when the rainshower passed through. so typical of weather in the philippines, even the sun shines through the rain! we saw some fantastic sealife – the highlight being a giant hawksbill turtle on their very first open water dive! (it was the largest hawksbill i’ve ever seen!) a good sign and a terrific start to their diving adventures. congratulations all. let’s go diving again….soon! dive (and fly) safe!