Tuesday, February 8, 2011
What.We.Do.Media is the brainchild behind a lot of the imagery, websites and PSA's that have been floating around the industry as of late. We hired their design team to create, build and launch the all new Shark Diver website.
Celebrating a decade in the commercial shark diving industry required a team who knew marketing, the dive world, conservation, and of course, sharks. Try finding that in an online web 2.0 template.
Fortunately for us the diverse team over at What.We.Do.Media knew exactly what we were looking for. In today's marketplace anyone can build a website. But to create a brand, and help launch it takes skill, dedication, and understanding.
Do we endorse the team over at What.We.Do Media?
Damn right we do and we're willing to share our success with you. You need What.We.Do.Media for all your your next web creation, branding and site launch.
So, you want to be in this industry for just a year, or the next twenty years?
Call them today, and start booking divers tomorrow.
A full partner in the effort to educate a global populace and change the perceptions of these magnificent animals.
These efforts are worldwide and have happened in more ways and with more initiatives than you can count.
But today it is time to support our own industry and two commercial shark diving members with direct action and your voice.
For readers of this blog you'll note our two year coverage of the ongoing anti-shark diving disaster in Hawaii. A small group of politico's in Oahu have sought to destroy two well known and safe commercial cage diving operations there. By any means necessary. In terms of anti-industry time and effort one word comes to mind to characterise what's been happening on those islands, "unprecedented".
The anti-shark diving effort has culminated in two shark diving boats being burned and a host of allegations against these two companies that are not based in science fact, but designed to enrage a local and uneducated populace. For the most part these two operators have battled against mounting odds, and today are asking for help from the broader commercial shark diving community.
I have met both operators, and have been on their shark site three miles off the Oahu's coast with cages. These are safe, clean, professional shark diving operations that deserve our industries full support. These are not unseasoned fly by night operations. They represent the Pacific face of the commercial shark diving industry.
If our industry could take one tenth of the effort it mounts on a daily basis to save sharks, to help save these two operations, we would be a better industry for it, because what gets decided in Hawaii can be recreated elsewhere, and not every sovereign nation or state wants or desires commercial shark diving in their waters.
Our industry has proven over the past two decades without a doubt that job creation, conservation efforts, public outreach and education are the intended by products of what we do commercially with sharks - each and every day.
The Bahamas $78 million dollar shark diving success story is but one example.
It is time that industry members circle the wagons and come to the aid of those in Hawaii who would seek to carry on that tradition, in face of a tiny minority who's backwards views and political agendas would seek to destroy the best and the brightest in the region.
One email today can and will make a difference for commercial shark diving worldwide and the folks in Hawaii who need your help. Let's take care of our industry this week, and start by sending in an email of support to:
Please detail in 200 words or less why commercial shark diving should be preserved on Oahu's North Shore. Feel free to cite current industry trends, success stories, personal shark diving anecdotes and or images.
Patric Douglas CEO
Your adrenaline kicks into the red zone as the shark glides past, dead silent, an arm's length from your face. He's Carcharodon carcharias, the great white, and this isn't an aquarium. It's his realm. You're sharing the water with the world's largest predatory fish, protected (this is the good news) from his infamous dental work by a cocoon of welded aluminum bars, floating at the stern of a luxury live-aboard trawler. Welcome to shark-cage diving, a thrilling, increasingly popular breed of adventure vacation.
The excitement begins underwater, as everyone nervously scans the void around and below the cage, searching for the day's first sighting. Suddenly, some eager diver will pound out a bass drum soundtrack on the bars, to announce the approach of a great white, looming up from its cruising depth. The drama is palpable. A shark rises into Windex-blue water near the surface, and muffled cries of "wow" can be heard beneath the noisy bubbling of everyone's breathing regulators. As the shark slows to inspect these strange creatures in their metal enclosure, a rare communion occurs-an intimate close-up glimpse at one of nature's most mythologized wild animals. But this is no kumbaya moment. Keep your hands inside and respect these efficient killers.
Adult great white sharks typically grow to lengths of around 15 feet-plus, and weigh upwards of a ton. They are the ocean's "apex predators," the ultimate expression of a line of marine vertebrates who've lived on this planet for 400 million years. To scientists and shark buffs, the great whites are a feast of complex behaviors: they're coy in their breeding and migration habits; they're surprisingly wary, calculating hunters; and they're probably the most skillful killing machines in nature.
The inshore waters of Guadalupe Island, located 250 miles off Baja
California, are among the few known stopovers for migratory great whites. Patric Douglas, of Shark Diver, the San Diego-based cage-dive operator, believes Guadalupe is "the most robust white shark habitat on earth." It's now a popular venue where tourists in wetsuits and face masks can safely observe this ancient, dangerous life form in its natural lair.
Strictly speaking, shark-cage diving isn't really diving at all. Usually, no scuba certification or even swimming skills are required. In a typical scenario, "divers" are safety-briefed, then descend just beneath the surface, with unlimited air supplied-hookah style-from topside, via scuba mouthpieces and rugged 12-foot hoses. Most cage dive boats spend about three days at the island, (Shark Diver's price for the total five-day expedition is around $3,100), each diver making four to five one-hour "rotations" daily, with periodic rest breaks on deck.