UB Diving. Voted #1 dive shop by a bunch of divers.
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Stay up to date with our weekly adventures, critter features and scuba history tidbits here, feel free to comment and share!
|Posted on August 27, 2015 at 1:45 PM||comments (1600)|
Ok for this week's TBT, I'm throwing it back to you guys.. I’m switching it up by including the Tuesday Trivia that I was unable to post a couple of days ago and combining the two. When I first saw this image, I was like, "What in the name of... ' and then I thought, hmm ok well that's a snorkel in his mouth but odd it was in the center, upon further research, it's called a swimmer's snorkel and they are still made. (In fact, they look cool and we can get them from Aqua Lung. But! And here's where I need your help? What's with the Mickey Mouse appendages on his head? Anyone know?
|Posted on August 21, 2015 at 5:25 PM||comments (1538)|
This week's FFF is all about the Penpoint Gunnel. (Apodichthys flavidus).
The Penpoint gunnel is generally between 10-20cm long but can grow to 46cm (1.5 feet). They are found is shades of green, maroon and brown. You can easily identify them by the light spots along their body and the dark stripe through their eyes.
It can be found from Alaska all the way down to southern California. They are an intertidal species that prefer to live in vegetation but will live in the sand/rocks in the winter.
|Posted on August 20, 2015 at 2:50 PM||comments (851)|
I have no idea why I'm finding this throwback ad from December 1969 so funny. The position maybe? The look on his face? Anyhow, this is obviously an ad showing the 'flexibility' of a wetsuit from the era. There's not alot of info on it in terms of how thick the neoprene is but nonetheless, it's pretty impressive. I'd attempt this in my 2 piece 7mm suit but A) I don't think it would flex that much and B) I don't want to spend the next several weeks trying to un-pretzel myself. Anyone who wants to submit a picture of themselves attempting this maneuver in their 2 piece 7mm suit will have their name and picture on the website for all to see for decades to come.
|Posted on August 14, 2015 at 2:05 PM||comments (959)|
What local fish has the most noble name? Certainly not the stubby squid.. Or the blackbelly eelpout. Nope. My vote goes to the Red Irish Lord.
The Red Irish Lord is one of the most colorful fish in our BC waters. It even has the ability to change its colors to blend in with its surroundings. They can live up to 6 years and grow up to 51cm in length. They are an ambush hunter & they remain still even when annoying divers are flashing lights in their eyes. But this same behavior makes them a perfect subject for underwater photographers.
They are part of the sculpin family. They are usually found in intertidal zones in rocky areas but can be found up to 450 meters deep.
|Posted on August 13, 2015 at 2:35 PM||comments (968)|
As I was thumbing through the July 1969 issue of Skin diver, I came across an ad for underwater communications via a megaphone type device. As Scuba Divers, we know that when we hear sound underwater, it's very difficult to ascertain what direction it's actually coming from so I found it interesting that such a device would give one the ability to talk underwater. I wasn't sure I wanted to use this ad for this weeks TBT but a few pages later into the same issue and I came across an article where they actually put this device to the test. Below is the original ad and then the two page article. Have a read.
|Posted on August 11, 2015 at 3:00 PM||comments (1074)|
Today's trivia should be pretty straight-forward.
What kind of skate is this?
Extra credit: Is it male or female?
Have you ever seen one on a dive?
|Posted on August 7, 2015 at 1:40 PM||comments (909)|
The Salmon.. British Columbia's Iconic fish. There are 5 known species of Pacific Salmon in BC Waters. They are the Coho, Pink, Chinook, Sockeye and Chum. Salmon are at the base of many First Nations culture, a major commercial export item for BC, and a huge tourism draw.
Pheromones, or chemical cues in the water guide salmon allowing them to find their birth streams. Also when spawning, they are capable of leaping out of the water up to two meters.
Did you know that UB Diving is getting up close and personal with the salmon? On August 30th, we're donning our wetsuits/drysuits and snorkeling down the Campbell River (provided there's enough water) to relaxingly drift through schools of salmon. It's an amazing experience and this will be my 14th year in a row of doing it (I missed last year due a shoulder injury) and it never gets boring. If you’re interested, check out our event on Facebook. Not on FB, give us a shout at the shop and we'll happily give you more details.
|Posted on August 4, 2015 at 2:35 PM||comments (1216)|
Ok that last couple of Tuesday Trivia's may have been a little "obscure'. So this week, I thought I’d try a fun one.
Everyone's who's been diving for a little while has heard the heard of 'Scuba Steve' and probably have referred to someone as 'Scuba Steve'.
This week's trivia question is , Where did this endearing term come from or even more recently, what movie made it a popular catchphrase?
|Posted on July 31, 2015 at 1:00 PM||comments (1005)|
For this week's Friday Fish fact, I have a whole treasure trove of facts for you about starfish.
Starfish (more correctly known as Sea Stars) are not fish. They are Echinoderms. They are related to sea urchins, sea cucumbers and even sand dollars. All Echinoderms have 5 point radial symmetry, which means that their body has 5 sections (or multiples thereof) arranged around a central disk. Next time you're on a beach or diving, see if you can find a sea star, sand dollar and sea urchin and find the 5 sections in each.
Not all sea stars have 5 arms. While the five-armed varieties of sea star are the most well-known, not all sea stars have 5 arms. Some have many more. Take our local waters Sun Star for instance, which has up to 40 arms! (Picture below)
Amazingly, sea stars can regenerate lost arms. This is useful if the sea star is threatened by a predator - it can drop an arm, get away and grow a new arm. Sea stars house most of their vital organs in their arms, so some can even regenerate an entirely new sea star from just one arm and a portion of the star's central disc. It won't happen too quickly, though. It takes about a year for an arm to grow back.
Sea stars do not have blood. Instead of blood, sea stars have a water vascular system, in which the sea star pumps sea water through its sieve plate, or madreporite, into its tube feet to extend them. Muscles within the tube feet retract them.
Sea stars have eyes. While they can't see as well as we do, sea stars have an eye spot at the end of each arm. This is a very simple eye that looks like a red spot. The eye doesn't see much detail, but can sense light and dark.
Our sea stars are disappearing. I recall diving as little as 5 years ago and encountering dozens of large sea stars on every dive I went on.
Lately, I am very hard pressed to recall a dive I've done where I've even seen one. It appears that there is a virus that is circulating between the sea star population that is causing them to die rapidly. You can learn more about what is happening at this link. Virus killing Sea Stars!
|Posted on July 30, 2015 at 1:55 PM||comments (1095)|
You ever go to watch a video on youtube and get sucked into that youtube next video spiral? I had one of those the other day. At the end of it, I came across this gem of a video that I thought would fit in with our Throwback Thursday theme splendidly. So I present to you the following 5 minute video from possibly the 1930's. https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=148&v=6OLnmJbs2XQ" target="_blank">Vintage Goggle Spearfishing.