Shark Guardian Directors Brendon Sing and Liz Ward-Sing had a fantastic time with the dive community on Koh Lanta in the Krabi province of Thailand, at the end of February 2014 and in to March. March has most certianly started in great style with 2 shark and marine presentations. Brendon and Liz visited dive shops and dived with Shark Guardian Dive Centers to provide education sessions/question and answer opportunities. The focus was on ThailandÂ eShark but Spot the Leopard Shark was reinforced also.
Starting the Lanta visit with an eShark Update at the Padi Members Forum
Brendon spoke for 20 minutes at the Padi Members Forum on the 27th of February. Andy Auer, regional representative, is hugely supportive of Shark Guardian and was happy for Brendon to encourage the audience to get involved in the project.
Shark Guardian Dive Center: Hidden Depths Diving
Hidden Depths became one of our first Shark Guardian Dive Centers in March 2013. Since then the owners Gary, Jo, Rich and Ali have been hugely supportive to our shark education objectives. Dive Master Trainees have provided us with information to use in our ‘Shark of the Month’ blogs. Since Spot the Leopard Shark – Thailand and Thailand eShark were released, Hidden Depths have continued to be one of the main contributors to both projects.
Our first Lanta presentation of 2014 at Hidden Depths
Brendon and Liz were very happy to present their shark and marine presentation on the evening of the 28th of February. The event was at Hidden Depths Dive Shop in Saladan, the main town of Lanta. Around 30 people attended the event with at least 5 other Dive Centers represented. Dive guests and tourists also joined the event and everyone enjoyed the wealth of information. Updates on Spot the Leopard Shark and Thailand eshark were well received.
Diving for sharks and getting the Lanta Community involved in shark conservation
Whilst on Koh Lanta Brendon and Liz visited dive shops to answer questions about Thailand eShark and to try and get more Lanta dive centers to input their data. Brendon dived with Hidden depths and was very happy to see some leopard sharks. Liz dived with our other Lanta Shark Guardian dive center, Lanta Diver. Liz did 3 dives around the Bida islands and saw black tip reef sharks on one dive, plus 3 leopard sharks on the last dive. Smiles all round!
Scubafish get a full house at their Lanta Headquarters for shark education in the South!
Scubafish held the second Shark Guardian event on the 2nd of March. Located Â in the southern part of Koh Lanta, this meant we could target a wider audience on the island. Again around 30 professionals had a great time seeing the presentation for the first time. Scubafish have also been active with Spot the Leopard Shark.
Scientist Christine Ward-Paige who is the lead scientist behind Thailand eShark dived with Scubafish in 2008. Since then staff have been contributing data to Christine’s Global Shark Assessment which is the basis of eShark. Shark Guardian is very happy to have the support of Scubafish in this way. We are also happy to announce Scubafish as a new Shark Guardian dive center! Watch out for details coming soon!
Thailand eShark as part of Project Aware Ocean Action Campaigns
Shark Guardians visit to Koh Lanta was part of an extra wave of education in support of eShark. Last year we won a grant towards eShark from Project Aware. We were extremely happy to be one of the winners in their Ocean Action Projects and once again thank people for voting for us. This extra funding means we can produce more resources to leave with dive centers and schools, as well as travel and present in more locations.
Whilst visiting places we are also establishing contacts who want to help and volunteer for Shark Guardian. One of the next steps with eShark is to get material translated to different languages and also to start working on presentations and materials for local Thai schools. Please contact us if you can help in any way!
More Shark Education in Thailand in March!
On Thursday 6th March we will do our first Phuket presentation for the diving community and general public. Join us at 7pm in Chalong at the Green Man bar and restaurant. On Friday we will return to the British International School. Shark Guardian are looking forward to meeting lots of new people over the coming days, providing information and inspiring more people to get involved in Shark Conservation.