A couple of weeks ago I went on my first ever..
This was amazing. We geared up and headed out with our huge waterproof torches back to Fly Point at around 8pm (where I had dived here previously).
|Blind shark (not actually blind)|
|Pineapple Fish (see the little red dot|
on his face)
When we got back we made a note of all of the animals that we saw. Here are a few of them: Sea
|This is a tiny Pygmy Leather Jacket|
|A Red Gilled Nembrotha - isn't it|
|Shovel-nose Ray (these can use their|
noses to flip over big rocks to find
Over the past week(ish) I have been coordinating my longer experiment looking at the effect of harmful algae on oyster larvae growth - and it has been going (mostly) to plan. Every second day I would measure hundreds of larvae to see how much growth had taken place, and also checked to see if they had full tummys (you can tell because they are almost completely transparent).
The consistent problematic thing with running experiments involving living creatures is that you have to keep them alive. So I had to feed them daily - pipetting 0.3ml of food algae mix into each of my tiny tubes of larvae (I had hundreds of tiny tubes of larvae), and I did water changes every other day (this was the part that took quite a while to do - and it was also the reason I was in work at from 7am - 1pm a couple of Sundays ago). But it's all worth it, because it looks like we are getting some interesting results! Hopefully I'll run them through some stats tests over the next few days and find some significant differences. Fingers crossed!
The Hunter Valley
|I also tried some port FOR FREE|
We saw that the weather was looking up and we decided on a trip up to the Hunter Valley (which is pretty famous for being a place that makes nice vino). We journeyed up there (really lovely scenery) and went into a few different places to learn about (and also maybe taste) some wine. Lots of the wine tasting was FREE - and I asked the poor wine gurus many questions about grapes and soil and what makes the nicest wine so nice. There were lots of tourists there as the day progressed (dam tourists being all touristy and going to taste wine..), and also a rather large hen party that looked pretty intent on trying most of the wines in the vicinity.
Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters
|I also met this girl - she |
is a very pretty
Last time I went to visit Brian and Bev on the other side of the Bay we had lunch with some of their friends - and last Monday I was invited to dinner with some of these friends (Jodie & Kenneth), at the Shark & Ray centre in Nelson Bay with the managing directer and marketing manager of the centre - Ryan and Lia.
We had a very lovely meal, and then I was treated to a private tour of the Shark & Ray Centre! I was shown all of the animals and we got into the tank in our waders and fed some of the sharks and rays! I was really impressed by the centre and how the focus is really strongly on conservation and on teaching the public about how to correctly treat wild animals.
|Kangaroos getting a bit cheeky - this one was watching|
one of the demos and standing in the crowd with us (it
was also stealing apples from peoples' bags)
This past weekend I stayed with Peta, Patrick, Charlie, Penny, and Lucy in Newcastle (Australia - I know it's confusing because they have copied all the place names at home..). Had a fab weekend being shown some of the city - walked on the Anzac walk, watched the cricket (everyone here is pretending not to care about the ashes - so I keep reminding them), went to the local market, and we went to a big reptile park where we saw many animals (not all of them reptiles), and got to pet a Kangaroo! Peta and Patrick also very kindly organised a full english breakfast which was AMAZING. I really enjoyed my stay in Newcastle and I'd like to explore it better at some point - it looks like a really interesting city - lots to do, beautiful coastline, and also some very large impressive industrial machinery to have a look at.
|A strange hedgehog (echidna)|
|This is part of the Anzac walk - amazing views out to sea and over Newcastle. Also there were some guys paragliding|
around - this is something I now really want to do. It's been added to the wishlist.