Farewell 2013 – what a corker. Happy 2014 everyone!

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Lindsay: As the sun sets on 2013…
So cheesy, but it’s true! This genuinely is the sun setting on the last day of 2013 here in the Seychelles. And what a year it has been. Since my arrival in February I have been in the midst of a whirlwind of marine marvellousness, madness, mayhem and megafauna!
So this blog post is mostly a celebration of our megafauna snorkelling sightings in 2013, here in Petite Anse.
Let’s start with a few of our key players.
We have had… (wait for it…..) 162 sightings of eagle rays, and …(wait for it…) 47 enormous bumphead parrotfish, as well as…. (wait for it….) 21 hawksbill turtles not to mention… (wait for it…) 18 Napolean wrasse!
But that’s not all, and to really really celebrate the rest in a rather festive manner, I have written them in the style of ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’! And they’re all accurate figures for 2013, but admittedly they occurred over twelve months not twelve days (artistic license). Now whether you read them or sing them is entirely up to you.

Here we go…

1388515291#On the first day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
A two metre hammerhead shark.

On the second day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

7359409On the third day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

On the fourth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

1091764On the fifth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

On the sixth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

1388521969On the seventh day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Seven whitetip reef sharks
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

4419829On the eighth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Eight really cool jellyfish!
Seven whitetip reef sharks
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

2456717On the ninth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Nine (thousand) parrotfish
Eight really cool jellyfish!
Seven whitetip reef sharks
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

1388519070On the tenth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Ten thorny stingrays
Nine (thousand) parrotfish
Eight really cool jellyfish!
Seven whitetip reef sharks
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

1388525296On the eleventh day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Eleven massive morays
Ten thorny stingrays
Nine (thousand) parrotfish
Eight really cool jellyfish!
Seven whitetip reef sharks
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark.

1388525643On the twelfth day in the Seychelles the ocean sent to me….
Twelve barracudas
Eleven massive morays
Ten thorny stingrays
Nine (thousand) parrotfish
Eight really cool jellyfish!
Seven whitetip reef sharks
Six banded snake eels…
Five stonefish!
Four marbled rays
Three scorpionfish
Two octopus
And a two metre hammerhead shark!!!!#

Here’s hoping for a megafauna-tastic 2014 for our marine education team!

We have been doing more than making up songs however….

Diving Alice in Wonderland

Charlotte: I was quite giddy as we prepared for the first  WiseOceans research dive in nearby Anse la Mouche, surveying a relatively healthy dive site called Alice in Wonderland.  Both Abbie and I are self confessed coral geeks and the opportunity to visit Alice in Wonderland – a wonderful reef down here in the south of the island – was one to savour. This time round it was to do two 50 metre coral diversity belts, which involves laying out 50m of tape underwater and each diver surveying 2.5m either side of the tape, recording which coral genera are present. This leads to a 50m x 5m belt of the reef being surveyed and the data will tell us the species richness of the site – the number of different coral present there   We will be returning to complete surveys of fish and invertebrates as well as other types of coral surveys in order to build up a full picture of Alice in Wonderland. Once completed, we will have a reasonable benchmark against which to measure the health of the reef in our own bay of Petite Anse.
More of that in future blogs, so stay tuned in 2014!
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