17/18 Moo 1, Koh Tao Suratthani, 84360 Thailand         Info @ Big Blue Conservation        +66 (0) 077 456 179

Big Blue Conservation - Projects

We all know that SHARKS need our help. Shark numbers are rapidly decreasing in Thailand and many divers have commented on the lack of shark sightings, even in our protected National Marine Parks. Over the last few years tourism and overfishing have all had a negative impact on our oceans around Thailand. On Koh Tao we have seen half the number of Whalesharks than last year. What we do see though, is a great many sharks in Thailand in the restaurants and pet shops. Tanks of Black Tip Reef Sharks an be seen for sale in Pattaya & Bangkok for the pet trade and large amounts of Bamboo & Zebra Sharks for sale at restaurants.

The Swim for Sharks 2011 is a statement by our small diving community to help protect sharks. We will be ditching our fins in favour of the more traditional sport of swimming! Participants will swim around Koh Nang Yuan unaided, but if you want to wear fins, that's OK too!

As a diver, what can you do to help? This year, we are joining Dive Tribes mission and the money raised from this years Swim For Sharks is going towards the purchase of these sharks to release into back into the waters around Koh Tao and Pattaya, and to buy Radio tags in order to monitor their health and movements. We don't expect the sharks to stay here, but there will be a higher chance of sightings if they are in the water in general, and are able to roam free, reproduce and visit our small island. So come along, even if you don't want to swim, learn more about sharks and conservation and help us raise the money needed to replenish our shark population.

Last year, Koh Tao's dive community raise over 17,000 baht and over 400 signatures for anti-shark finning campaign support - lets see if we can beat that this year!!
 
Come join us on August 12th for the big swim!

10 - 11 Meet at Big Blue Dive Resort for registration and welcome drinks

11 - 12 Shark conservation talk and petition signing

1 - 4 Swim time!! Swim 3.4 km around Koh Nang Yuan

7 - late Evening festivities including sponsored Shave for Sharks, live music, and drink deals (Big Blue 2 - Pranee resort)

Save our sharks, save our seas!

Introducing Koh Tao's very own Iphone app.!! This app contains all information needed to dive around Koh Tao, as well as some great information about the marine life you find here, conservation on Koh Tao, general diving etiquette and even how to blow bubble rings! It is an essetial guide for anyone interested in diving as you can see all the fish life you will encounter, corals, detailed dive site maps, reef conservation, hand signals, and lots more.

Features:

✓ Dive sites with the detailed descriptions and underwater dive maps!

✓ Corals and Fish list

✓ Hand signals

✓ Fish signs

✓ Buddy checks, diving tips and hits

✓ Safety information and Emergency assistance

✓ Become a Bubble Rings Master!

Visit the famous Koh Tao Dive Guide at http://www.dive-guide.org/

Stay tuned for more updates: Similans, Sharm El Sheikh and more locations coming in the next updates!

           

Sharks are experiencing unprecedented population declines worldwide due to overfishing. Recent estimates suggest that populations of large sharks have declined by 90% or more in areas where they were once abundant, such as on Koh Tao. We used to have the pleasure of diving with Leopard sharks at White Rock, Bull sharks at Chumphon Pinnacle, Bamboo sharks at Aow Leuk, but unfortunately a shark sighting is less frequent than ever before. And with the pressures still increasing with shark numbers still declining, if we don't do something to help now, we could lose these 400 million year old evolutionary distinct fish forever.

The united voice and effort from a dedicated community of divers like us on Koh Tao is all it takes to help re-establish shark populations and reduce the rate of decline for the wonderful creatures in our local waters! And that's just what we plan to do! So nearly 100 divers from Koh Tao and divers from Pattaya plan to swim 3.4km to raise awareness and funds for shark conservation!

We have already raised around 15,000 baht promised from sponsors of the swimmers, and we expect to triple that on the day! After the big swim, we also have a BIG party, with live music, prize giving, head shaving, film crew, jaeger bombs and BBQ! Come and join in the fun and watch some of our very own compete for the title of the faster swimmer! The big names so far include Big Blue Diving manager Jim, SSI Instructor trainer Simon, Divemaster Mentor Nick and Freediving/Scuba instructor Serena (who did the whole 3.4 km last year in 59 minutes!) It's August 11th, the swim is at 12.30, (talk on shark conservation from 10 and evening events start at 7.30pm), and although it's busy season, we all need a little challenge and a good party to let our hair down (or shave it off...). This is all in support of raising funds and awareness of our sharks in Koh Tao - we have teamed with DiveTribe to purchase radio tags to attach to sharks to be released on Koh Tao in December, and help protect our existing populations with research and support. Thanks everyone, and if you're not here and still want to support this, you can still donate online - drop us an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information!

Although they look like contrails from aircraft, these lines are actually plumes of mud left behind shrimp trawlers. Scientists have known for years that when fishing trawlers drag nets and gear across the ocean bottom they trap or kill almost all the fish, mollusks and other creatures they encounter. And the dragging destroys underwater features like reefs, turning the bottom to mud. Fish cannot see in water that is murky with suspended sediment. The mud can also clog their gills and set off algae blooms, which, in turn, lead to vast increases in bacteria. Ultimately, the result is a dead zone. Additionally, studies report that oil from previous spills cover the ocean floor, and that many shrimp catches are covered in oil dredged from the bottom.

        

Unfortunately, the majority of shrimp is obtained from trawlers which destroy reefs and substrate where other fish, including Tuna, like to stay, making shrimp an incredibly unsustainable (and rather oily!) seafood to eat! So please keep this in mind when ordering shrimp - ask if it was sustainably farmed. It doesn't hurt to ask, especially when our health is involved!

The good news, Dr. Daniel Pauly director of the fisheries center at the University of British Columbia said, is that trawlers and their mudtrails can be seen so clearly that it would in theory be possible to monitor fishing by satellite. Even if captains of individual boats do not want to cooperate in such efforts, Dr. Pauly said, “we can see what they do.” We're watching you trawlers...always watching...

<p>Unfortunately litter and improper disposal of rubbish is a major problem throughout Asia, and one that we have been trying to tackle from many fronts on our island over the last few years. We already have great efforts in place to help keep our island clean, such as our monthly clean-ups. But to improve our islands preservation and keep our paradise clean, Save Koh Tao and members of the community are proposing to start a collection of programs that will together attack the issue from all sides in the form of a master plan. It is our goal that this will not only greatly decrease the amount of litter and marine debris around our island and be positive for the local community, but will also make our island an example for other places in the region to manage their waste more effectively and holistically.</p><p>Unfortunately litter and improper disposal of rubbish is a major problem throughout Asia, and one that we have been trying to tackle from many fronts on our island over the last few years. We already have great efforts in place to help keep our island clean, such as our monthly clean-ups. But to improve our islands preservation and keep our paradise clean, Save Koh Tao and members of the community are proposing to start a collection of programs that will together attack the issue from all sides in the form of a master plan. It is our goal that this will not only greatly decrease the amount of litter and marine debris around our island and be positive for the local community, but will also make our island an example for other places in the region to manage their waste more effectively and holistically.</p><p>The four programs involved in this master plan are: (1) Beach and Road Bin Installation (2) Daily/weekly island clean-up crew (3) Anti-plastic and foam box Campaign (4) Signage on beaches and roads. the project will involve many members of the community, including dive schools, local business and the Thai community.</p><p>Project AWARE have started a competition that would award the winners a chance to start up a community conservation effort such as this - help us win and vote for us online now! Please click the link to vote!! Your votes count! We have submitted a proposal for Waste and debris management here on Koh Tao and if we get the most votes Project AWARE Ocean Action Project will help this proposal be put forward and undertaken. Please tell your colleagues and friends to vote as this really will help make a difference. Thankyou for your support!  <a>http://www.facebook.com/ProjectAWAREFoundation</a></p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="/media/rokgallery/5/5b556b26-2784-4988-ac53-d9c5517e6846/0ab04bc0-f75c-49fb-d535-0763bdba0844.jpg" data-rokbox="" data-rokbox-title="2012-08-22" data-rokbox-caption=""><img style="max-width: 100%; height: auto;" title="" src="/media/rokgallery/5/5b556b26-2784-4988-ac53-d9c5517e6846/0ab04bc0-f75c-49fb-d535-0763bdba0844-thumb.jpg" alt="" /></a></p>