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Therefore we re-shaped it into web pages, for everybody to read. In this way we hope to contribute to the well being of the under water world, and at the same time share with you some absolutely marvelous cartoons...
Coral Reef Etiquette
The people who enjoy and appreciate our underwater life most are scuba divers. They are however, a growing threat to the survival of many marine ecosystems. The sport of diving has become increasingly popular. It is no longer considered dangerous, nor is it only a rich-man's sport.
With advances in safety equipment and an increase in tourists visiting tropical destinations for their vacations, diving is becoming a standard activity on the holiday agenda. As a result, coral reefs throughout the world are beginning to suffer and show signs of stress from the constant pounding of divers' fins and sediment rain.
Each illustration shows a spiny character reprimanding the wayward divers. This animal, Diadema setosum, the long-spined sea urchin, is abundant in a growing number of dive areas and indicates an imbalance in the marine ecosystem. Under normal conditions, these sea urchins hide from predators, in crevices and under rocky overhangs, only emerging at night while natural predators for example, triggerfish, have been fished out long ago, leaving the urchins to multiply unchecked. Their spines are poisonous and few divers have managed to avoid being stabbed in low visibility dives, or when diving in a swell.
By following a few simple rules, it is possible for divers and snorkellers to enjoy visits to coral reefs and to leave them as they found them.
A final word for instructors who may set up diving schools where there are still pristine reefs, novice divers are the ones most likely to cause damage to the reef through incorrect buoyancy and rapid movement of the arms and fins. training should preferably be carried out in an area where the least harm can be done.
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