Seasearch – marine life identification course

18 Jul

Just wondered if any of your visitors might be interested in our project – Seasearch. It’s a national UK project which trains volunteer divers to record marine life and habitats. You don’t need any experience to take part as all training is provided. We are running a marine life identification course in Portrush on the 1/2nd September. For more info people can contact me on

Claire asked me to advertise this as she has difficulty reaching independent divers.

Dogfish at the Skerries

23 Jun
Haven’t dived this site in nearly a year but it was nice to be back and we were rewarded with plenty to see, including 3 other dogfish and a large conger eel, that Neil unsucessfully tried to coax out for the camera, and good conditions, no current as it was slack water and pretty good vis, I’d say about 13-15 metres.

Conger on William Mannell wreck

12 Jun

This was the second one we saw and he came within about 35 cm’s of my face before I actually saw him. He definitely made me flinch. Dive was fantastic, perfect conditions, no current, great viz, enjoyed by one and all, even James who apparently experienced narcosis for the first time ever and from the sounds of it will be taking another fix sometime soon!


1 Jun

A jaunt around the SS Castleeden. I like to post something every once in a while and unfortunately owing to other trips and weather and not having my camera there has been a lull in video and photos. So to try and redress the balance somewhat here is a wee dive from last summer. Enjoy!

Sponge life on Rathlin’s North Wall

22 Apr

There really is a great variety of non fish aquatic life on Rathlin. It was reported recently in various publications that there was something like 70 new species of sponge identified during a survey of the water surrounding Rathlin Island. Some of these can be seen on Waterworld a programme broadcast on BBC last Autumn. Not sure if this footage shows any or not. There is some Grey elephant sponge though


17 Apr

WreckSight brings to you unique visualisation of shipwrecks derived from high resolution multibeam sonar data. WreckSight images can be provided as 2D prints or 3D models, viewable on a computer ( PC and Mac) with WreckSight’s own software. You can then virtually explore your chosen wreck on the screen.

WreckSight is a development of ADUS, a company set up jointly by the Universities of St Andrews and Dundee to undertake high definition surveys of wrecks and other man-made structures underwater.

Safety stop on Lochgarry – Rathlin

17 Apr

Just wanted to add this video, to remind me how good the diving is going to get. We had a definate 20m+ when this was shot last year. Conditions are definately on the rise and the marine life is coming back. I spotted a shoal of over 100 pollack last weekend on this wreck. I have some video of the wreck so watch this space, I think I will add a post all about it soon

Peacock Worm (Sabella pavonina)

28 Mar

These are facinating to watch. I think it was the first time my dive buddy Kevin had seem them. When i showed them to him he was like a kid having discovered something new for the first time. He kept swimming up to them and touching them just to watch them retract.

For those of you interested heres some information about them. (Sabella), any of a genus of segmented marine worms of the class Polychaeta (phylum Annelida). This type of fanworm (Sabella pavonina) lives in a tube about 30 to 40 centimetres (12 to 16 inches) long that is open at one end and constructed of mud particles cemented together by mucus. All but the top few centimetres of the tube is buried in the substratum. The front end of the worm has a fan of striped feathery tentacles, used for feeding and respiration, that protrudes from the tube into the overlying seawater. Inorganic and organic particles suspended in the water are trapped in mucus secreted by the tentacles. They are then transported down the tentacles by beating cilia and used either for tube building or passed into the mouth as food. Peacock worms rapidly withdraw their tentacles into the safety of the tube when predators approach. These worms are found both in the intertidal zone and in shallow subtidal areas.

The Thesis, Oban

26 Mar

Just home form a 2 day dive trip to Oban, the Sound of Mull. Had 4 great dives including, the Hispania, The Shuna, The Thesis and the Breda. The Thesis was by far the best conditions, probably because it lies on a shingle bottom, so no silt. The highlight of the dive was swimming around inside the hull at the bow. There are large openings making it very safe for minor penetration. Technically it is an overhead environment, but as you are never more than a few fin kicks from the holes in the hull the risk is minimal. It is quiet surreal to watch people HID torches bouncing around inside the wreck when you are swimming outside or vice-versa. I can imagine it being even better with alot of fish life around. When do they all get back from their vacation??? anyone….

Found this video too on Youtube, enjoy

Morros Macuey, Huatulco, Mexico

7 Mar
This gives a good indication of the type of diving off the pacific coast in Mexico in March. Unfortunately the conditions weren’t great, but there was plenty of life around. I did actually see two sea horses in the wild on the previuos dive, but alas I di

This video was originally shared on by waveneyavenue with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license.

Scapa Flow – The Brummer

24 Nov

Video of dive on The Brummer

This video was originally shared on by waveneyavenue with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license.

bluevoice – defending dolphins

3 Nov

Have been watching some great podcasts recently, including DiveFilm Podcast Video, Dive Pixel Underwater Videography Podcast and Pod Diver TV, you might like to check them out and subscribe to them. One in particular caught my eye entitled “Defending Dolphns” about the ‘Japanese dolphin drive’ I was horrified by what I saw. runs a series of campaigns , the main one being to stop the slaughter of dolphins in Japan. Please try to suport their cause.

S.F.V William Manell

11 Sep

Another great wreck found off Glengad Head Culdaff Bay, Co.Donegall this fishing trawler served as an excort vessel in WWI and was converted into a minesweeper for WWII. She was named after a crewman who served onboard the Victory with Lord Nelson at Trafalgar. Read all about the wreck here. Definately only diveable at slack water. We arrived just towards the end of slack and had a bit of a fight on our hands towards the end of the dive. However as we did a free ascent we did not have to impersonate a flag on the saety stop which is always a bonus. We had a bit of a wait, while “the dubs” did their extended deco stops, but when they travel so far you can’t give them too hard a time. The amount of live on the wreck is incredible and some of this can be seen on my little video available at youtube

Diving Skellig Michael – Co.Kerry

19 Jul

Definately one of the best dives I have ever done, despite average conditions for the site (only 20 metres viz). We had a very pleasant trip out to the rock courtesy of Captain Joe and his dog Winkle. We were on a 30 footer hard bottom vessel, the standard boat type for the excursions out to the rock.

We were accompanied by our non diving woman folk some of whom waited on the rock and some of whom stayed on baord for the duration of the dive. As it turned out we made a 45min one tank dive consisting of a gentle drift along a wall covered in the most magnificantly coloured jewel anemomes along to a similarly decorated pinnacle about 30 metres in diameter and dropping down to 100+m. Crays and lobster were rife, as were the multitude of fish species many of which remaining unidentified.

The site comprised of a series of walls, shelves and gullies and would have been perfect for divers with less experience than us bottoming out at just over 30 metres apart from the pinnacle. With DSMB deployed we carried out a saftey stop after a rather lengthy off gasing spell at about 12metres while exploring the pinnacle.

De-kitting was an interesting experience, using a mixture of stretching reaches and ropes to get all our bits and pieces backm onto the boat and preserve the integrety of the ladder (we were forbidden from climbing it fully kitted, not to save our legs but to safe the ladder from being “ripped off the feckin boat”) – Sorry Joe!

So after the most perfect dive, couldn’t be matched in many remote dive resorts worldwide, we were treated to an amazing site which is little Skellig, home to hundreds of thousands of birds, Gannets, Gillamots, Razorbills, Fulmars, Kittywakes to name but a few.

I will definately be back! As usual there are photos on Flickr and videos at usual spots on my blog and on If you don’t know the links by now, happy googling and or searching on respective sites!

Surface swim at SS Castle Eden

7 Jul

This has got to be one of the best dives this year!. We dived the SS Castle Eden Wednesday evening with perfect slack (neaps I think). Having got my mask clip all fixed up (Thanks Liam) I was good to go and we set off from Portstewart. Took about 35mins to get there. Everyone was scanning the water for any sign of basking sharks as there had been a pod (is that the correct collective noun?) spotted in the area recently. It was actually filmed and should be televised on TV this winter.

The dive was great, marine life unbelievable. As usual I have a wee video treat for you all its the eigth one in the list. Apologies in advance for the Darth Vader sound track! there are few more photos of the dive and afterwards while waiting for the two deadly deco divers! usual place, click the image above to be taken through to my flickr.

Its quite a big wreck, but with viz surpassing 25m we were able to take quiet a lot in, travelling form the boilers to the bow and back again. The last time I dived the wreck was with John Liddiard earlier in the year, or rather he was diving it at the same time as me from the same boat! He managed to sketch the entire wreck on one dive, fair enough he was on a rebreather and stayed on the wreck for an extra 10-15 mins, but it was good going.

The fact that I had the camera and the sheer enjoyment of the dive and great conditions resulted in me losing track of the shot line, hence the free ascent and surface swim. Still they say “every day is a learning day”

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