Monday, January 04, 2021

Playing with Sharks!

Source - and here - and here - click for detail!

 
Hah - watch this.
And here she is on Shark Reef in all her glorious pinkness, a couple of days later - watch in 1080 and full screen.
Of course she did stand out like a sore thumb. 
And of course she did catch the attention of our big, bold and very dominant Shark Icon Tip. Talk about being given a haircut - and then watch how her nephew Jono barely avoided smacking her with his heavy video housing on top of it! 
But of course Valerie would have it no other way!

Anyway, it has been loads of fun.
Valerie, and Ron have been our best friends literally forever, and every visit is always a great joy and an honor, too - and having been chosen to be featured in her movie, doubly so.
And now the whole big shebang has been completed - and apparently it is great, to the point that is has been selected to screen at the prestigious Sundance Festival. Considering the mess in the USA, I expect the event to be largely virtual, and that one will be able to watch the movie online, possibly even outside of the US - so there.

And if not, make sure you don't miss it.
Valerie is one of the true diving Legends, and then some - and what makes this movie so unique is that much of her adventurous, passionate and fascinating life has actually happened on camera. And now the public will be able to actually witness it, which could not have come soon enough - especially when compared to the exploits of today's forgettable self promoting Shark charlatans and media whores!
So thank you to Producer Bettina and Director Sally - this is really very much appreciated.

But I'm digressing as always.
Enjoy Valerie's movie!

Monday, December 28, 2020

Baby Lemon vs Barracuda!

 
Wow - watch.
 
 
I guess one could say, such is life out there in the wild.
But I'm particularly happy that the little Lemon made it out alive!
 
Anyway, enjoy!
 

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Yasa - Incoming!

Source - click for detail!


This is gonna be really bad.
You can follow the bloody fiasco in near real time here.

See you on the other side!
 
PS - we are a bit rattled but fine
Thank you so much for your support!

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Fiji Bull Sharks - Paper!

Yes those would be our samples - click for detail!
 
That was then and alas, nothing much has come of it.
For some reason that eludes me, Christine never got around to actually publishing the relevant paper, and a later attempt at resuscitating the effort failed due to a general lack of interest and/or funding and/or time, or whatever. Plus I've been told that nowadays, the newest and shiniest tool for population studies is SNP markers and not anymore microsatellite DNA - and I'll most certainly leave it that, the more as that's about as much as I understand.
Or not - so correct me if I'm wrong.

Enter our indefatigable friend Kerstin!
She is now a newly minted, and highly deserving PhD - and the latest paper from her thesis once again confirms that the insular Bull Shark population from Fiji is genetically different, and likely closed = isolated from its continental counterparts. 
In essence, this means that our Bulls are truly unique and that they spend their whole life right here in the archipelago without ever engaging in large transoceanic migrations across deep water trenches and vast distances. And no, they also most definitely do not travel to Vanuatu and Australia for mating as was recently publicly proclaimed from the peak of Mount Stupid!
Obviously, this makes them specially precious but also, especially vulnerable - and Tashi's My Fiji Shark initiative, especially pertinent!
 
And the taxonomic consequences?
Years ago my ichthyological guru told me that a species is what a geneticist tells you it is - and very sadly and despite of my best efforts all the way to outright begging, the relevant Shark taxonomists remain firmly of the opinion that the present genetic distinction doesn't warrant declaring a new species. 
And when it comes to our Bulls at least being a possible (and I would add: obvious!) subspecies or race, I'm being told that apparently, in Shark taxonomy one just doesnt do that
Oh well - but we will keep on trying!

Anyway, great job!
 
Oh and - please, Adopt Your Shark Now! 
Thank you.
 

Monday, December 14, 2020

TC Yasa!

Click for detail!

Bingo. 

Sadly, it also looks like it is highly likely that starting on Thursday, it will very badly affect the Yasawas, Nadi & Lautoka and then Vatulele and Kadavu - see the forecasts here and here.
See at bottom!
 
So far, it looks like we down here will fare better.
But who knows as those tracks are fickle at best - plus, we will certainly experience some mighty gales and heaps of rain.

So there you have it.
And in case you're still wondering: you need to start prepping right now.
Seriously, chop chop!
 
Good luck everybody! 

PS - and this?
 
Source - click for detail!
 
Believe it or not, but we're currently sandwiched between two cyclones: TC Yasa, currently a Cat2 and TC Zazu, a Cat1 that is lingering close to Vava'u!
 
What a fiasco - bloody Climate Change anybody?

PPS - NaDraki here and here, FMS, Windy here etc = the track has changed dramatically = not good at all!

Friday, December 11, 2020

Bloody Cyclone!

 
Well, as so often I was wrong.

That cyclone forecast was very real.
It's gonna be called Yasa and it's gonna linger forever = pick up strength around Vanuatu, and most certainly influence the weather in our West and also give us a good soaking down here, albeit with much lighter winds, once it starts tracking South.
970 HP is approx a Cat 3 and it may even increase further.

So be careful peeps.
You know what to do!

Monday, December 07, 2020

Already?


Well well - behold the first cyclone of the season!
But it's obviously only a forecast and methinks it is wrong.
 
But who am I to say. 
All of 2020 has been warmer than average and now we're in the middle of a La NiƱa which over here translates into a hot and wet summer, with possibly more cyclones.

Be it as it may, it's a good time to get ready.
Personally, I'm gonna trim the trees and clean the garden, test drive the generator, check the tarps and ropes, and make sure I have enough water, food and fuel.

Good luck everybody!