On 20 February 2016, tropical cyclone Winston struck Fiji. It was described as the most destructive cyclone ever to strike in the Pacific. With winds of up to 280km/h, the coral reefs in the Namena Marine Reserve and Vatu-i-Ra Conservation Park off Fiji were completely destroyed.
To understand how cyclones affect coral reefs and how fast the reefs recover, the team at Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) Fiji conducted three surveys at different times—one month after, six months after and in December 2020 (more than four years after the cyclone).
Keeping positive and always on the look out to improve our product for our clients, be it on land or sea, we have taken the opportunity during the COVID-19 ‘quiet-time’ to drop in and check out a few marks we have had on our plotters over time and see first-hand what the diving potential actually is.
Today we headed out in picture perfect conditions and with a strong incoming tide bringing with it excellent visibility - great for us, and strong currents - excellent for fish life and feeding action.
2020 was certainly a tough year and whilst almost everyone on the planet was in some way or another effected by circumstances around COVID-19 our entire Fijian life and livelihood relies either directly or indirectly on tourism.
It felt so great to help share a little fun and education with the youth of today, who in turn will become our leaders of tomorrow, to provide the opportunity to see first-hand why divers from around the globe flock to the famous Bligh Waters to experience ‘Fiji’s Finest Diving’ and the ‘Soft Coral Capital of the World’.
Scott Bennett writes: I’d like to introduce you to some of our friends, enthused our guide Manasa, a.k.a Papa, as he held aloft a well-worn loose-leaf binder. The photographs within produced nervous laughter and a couple of anxious glances amongst a few of the divers. Then again, with names like Scarface, Hook and Big Mama, these were no ordinary friends. They were sharks, and we would soon be making their acquaintance.