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Bantin's Blog - Small is Beautiful

August 29, 2014

The Far East, mainly formed by Indonesia, Malaysia and Papua New Guinea, is famous for its vast catalogue of marine life, with more species identified than in any other area of the world. These range from the tiniest pigmy seahorse to the giant manta ray. North Suluwesi and Raja Amphat, Sipadan and Layang Layang, Loloata, all are names famous or about to be famous with travelling divers. Lately, scuba divers have come to appreciate the tiny and obscure, even bizarre, animals that live in environments other than coral reefs. We call it ‘muck-diving’ and there is one particular place where it all started. The strait between Lembeh and the mainland of North Sulawesi is not some idyllic stretch of water,...

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Bantin's Blog - Practise Makes Perfect

August 22, 2014

Some of you will have learned to dive but maybe only paid lip-service to some of the skills you were taught. If you want those techniques to become second-nature, you'll need to practise them. Practise basic drills like mask-clearing and regulator mouthpiece-clearing whenever you can.  A pool is the ideal place to do it. If you are the member of a diving club, there are usually pool sessions once every week. Removing and replacing a mask successfully while underwater is one of the most difficult tasks that a new diver has to learn. There seems to a psychological barrier that must be overcome. It’s probably because of the mammalian reflex that tells us to hold our breath when we feel...

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