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SDF News Sheet January 2009


This monthly electronic news sheet is provided as a service to our members

SCUBA DIVERS FEDERATION OF SA, PO Box 360, Goodwood SA 5034



www.sdfsa.net sdfsa@adam.com.au

We are the peak body in South Australia, representing all recreational scuba divers.

We act as a voice for all divers and other associations on all diving related matters.
We trust that all of our members and news sheet readers enjoyed a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.
If you don’t have the time to read through everything in this news sheet, take advantage of the following table of contents (which contains most of the headings). Click on any item of interest to proceed straight to that section.


CONTENTS:


NEXT MEETING 1

ABALONE FISHING RESTRICTIONS 2

COMMITTEE RESPONSE RE OUR SUBMISSION ON DESAL PLANT 3

MARINE REPORTING CONTACT Nos. 4

MARINE PARKS UPDATE 5

SA SHIPWRECK CENTENARIES 5

CLEAN UP AUSTRALIA DAY 5

UNDERWATER TRAIL PLAQUES NEEDS CLEANING 5

SOLITARY ISLANDS 5

AERIAL BEACH PATROLS 6

DECEMBER ISSUE OF “OCEANUPDATE” ONLINE 6

NEW TECHNOLOGY FOR FISHERMEN 6

SHARK SIGHTINGS & ATTACKS 6

MARINE PHOTOBANK 7

SDFSA BULLETIN 8

FORTHCOMING EVENTS 8

CCSA SUMMIT ON ENERGY IN A CHANGING CLIMATE 8

SEA TURTLE BIOLOGY & CONSERVATION SYMPOSIUM 9

CARAVAN AND CAMPING SHOW 9

CLEAN UP AUSTRALIA DAY 9

OZTeK’09 9

BENEATH THE SEA 2009 9

LONDON INTERNATIONAL DIVE SHOW 9

ADEX 2009 9

2009 LEAFY SEA DRAGON FESTIVAL 9

BSAC’S “2009 DIVE FEST: PARTY ON THE BEACH” 9





NEXT MEETING


We are not holding a meeting in January. Our first meeting for the new year is being held at 8pm on Tuesday 10th February at Marden Senior College (Marden Road, Marden). We need your club’s participation at the meeting so please ensure that your club’s appointed delegate, or a proxy, attends. If your club can't send a representative to the meeting, we still need your delegate to provide input on issues for your club.

ANOTHER NEW SA FISHERIES PATROL VESSEL


PIRSA Fisheries has a new purpose-built, 7m-long twin-hulled sailfish catamaran called FPV (Fisheries Patrol Vessel) Bluefin. The $200,000 vessel is for use by Fisheries Officers based at Ceduna and Streaky Bay on the far west coast, covering an area from Streaky Bay to the WA border. It is a further boost for Fisheries enforcement capabilities. Bluefin is fitted with state-of-the-art electronics for navigation, plotting and radar. She is capable of taking 4 officers out to 30nm offshore and she will be used to check on compliance by fishers and investigate suspected breaches of fisheries legislation. An identical vessel called FPV Cygnet was recently provided to Fisheries Officers on Kangaroo Island. Both vessels can work with Southern Ranger, the State’s large offshore fisheries patrol vessel, during deeper offshore operations.

ABALONE FISHING RESTRICTIONS


Meanwhile, divers are reminded that the daily (combined) bag limit for abalone in SA is 5 abalone per person per day and that it is mandatory to carry a suitable measuring device when fishing for abalone in South Australia. A combined boat limit of 10 abalone per boat for 2 or more persons also applies. There are also size limits (legal minimum length) and other requirements that apply. All species* in all SA waters must measure a minimum of 13cm across the greatest dimension of the shell.

* The only exception being for green-lip abalone from the Western Zone (coastal waters west of longitude 136” 30’ east). There are three Abalone Management Zones – Western, Central & Southern. Green-lip abalone from the Western Zone must measure a minimum of 14.5cm across the greatest dimension of the shell.

All abalone collected must be measured with the ‘suitable measuring device’ as soon as it is removed from the surface where it was attached. If it is found to be undersized, it must be placed back in the same spot. All abalone collected must be brought to a position above the high water mark before removing the shell. Abalone is protected in some areas and closures are declared from time to time. Recreational fishers are not permitted to sell or trade their catch of any species, including abalone. These details are provided as a guide only and divers intending to collect abalone should read page 40 of the 2008 SA Recreational Fishing Guide before doing so.

It was in January 2008 that Fisheries Officers stopped two men at Point Drummond on Eyre Peninsula. The men had around 200 abalone and 59 were undersize. They were found guilty of taking over the bag limit of abalone, taking undersize abalone and failing to carry an accurate measuring device to measure the abalone. They both received large fines and costs.



SUBMISSION RE EWENS PONDS


We finalized our submission in response to the “Ewens Ponds Conservation Park Draft Management Plan Amendment” (2008) and sent it in prior to the 25th December deadline. A copy was forwarded on to our member clubs to use any of the details for their own submission. Many thanks go to all those people who assisted with the preparation of our submission. We received confirmation of receipt of our submission prior to Christmas. A letter received from the DEH Land Management Branch advised us that our submission (was) being assessed against the criteria . . . for analysing public submissions. (The method of analysing public submissions was outlined on the back of the letter.) We were also told that a copy of the final Ewens Ponds Conservation Park Management Plan Amendment and Analysis of Public Submissions would be forwarded to us upon adoption of the management plan by the Minister for Environment and Conservation.

COMMITTEE RESPONSE RE OUR SUBMISSION ON DESAL PLANT


We also received a response from the Environment, Resources & Development Committee before Christmas regarding our submission re the Desalination Inquiry. Ours was one of 37 submissions received by the Committee. It was actually listed No.5 on the submission list in the Interim Report on the inquiry. The Interim Report apparently focuses just on Port Stanvac. A final report relating to environmental impacts for Spencer Gulf will be completed this year. The Minister has 4 months to respond to the Interim Report (dated 16/12) and then table the response in Parliament. Further details may be found at www.parliament.sa.gov.au/erdc .
MORE ON EWENS PONDS & EIGHT MILE CREEK

Neville Skinner advises us that readily obtainable data re Ewens Ponds and Eight Mile Creek is available at http://www.epa.sa.gov.au/eight_mile.html . He also tells us that the EPA say (at http://www.epa.sa.gov.au/eight_mile_archive.html ) "In Eight Mile creek, the total nitrogen is mainly in the form of soluble oxidised nitrogen. Elevated oxidised nitrogen could lead to excessive algal growth, particularly during warmer months. The poor nutrient results for the recent samples are consistent with previous results (see graphs . . . ). The amount of nitrogen can be increased as a result of fertilisers, animal wastes or wastewater infiltrating the groundwater in the region that is the source of this creek. Extended dry conditions and excessive irrigation practices could also increase nitrogen concentrations in the creek. The EPA is involved in a project at Ewen Ponds and Eight Mile Creek which aims to assess the causes of this problem."

And again:

"The amount of nitrogen can be increased as a result of fertilisers, animal wastes or wastewater infiltrating the groundwater that is the source of this creek. Nitrogen may also come from farms during storms. The poor nutrient results for the recent samples are consistent with previous results."

Neville says, “And I don't think DEH has the power to contradict the designated authority in this area! Interesting to see I get a mention, along with a MLSSA article, at http://nrm.sa.gov.au/nrmresearch/display.php?table=research_project&id=5073 . And for those that missed the ANGFA article, it can be viewed at www.angfa.org.au/ftp/Save_Ewens_Pond_low_res.pdf . Besides, DEH admit in their Feb 2008 Press Release (at www.environment.sa.gov.au/data/press/ewenPonds.pdf ), "At this stage the decline in water quality appears to be mainly due to loss of flows and increased nutrient levels". So there you have it. Also read page 7 of the Piccaninnie Ponds CP Management Plan 1992 at http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/parks/pdfs/PARKS_PDFS_PICCANINNIE_PNDS_MP.PDF , that gives some insight into similar circumstances that led to the introduction of a permit system for diving Piccaninnie Ponds.”

SA DIVERS IN “GUIDELINES” MAGAZINE


Congratulations go to Phil Mercurio on having his article “Water Quality Sampling Tests For The Mount” published in the December issue of the CDAA’s “Guidelines”. If you look closely, you may even see our own Neville Skinner in one of the photos taken at the CDAA Members Symposium last October. Ken Smith, the CDAA’s SA Rep, is also featured.

RECENT DIVER DEATH


A 35-year old SA man, having his first accredited dive, lost consciousness and drowned on 21st December. His buddy had been forced to inflate his buoyancy vest underwater to get him to the surface. The pair were diving between the Bluff and Wright Island, Victor Harbor, at "Shark Alley''. The buddy waved furiously on the surface to attract the attention of a nearby boat. The boat picked up the two men but the crew was unable to revive the unconscious man. Ambulance officers were also unable to revive the man later on. The coroner will now prepare a report on the incident.
SNORKELLER DEATH IN WA

Meanwhile, according to the web page found at http://news.smh.com.au/national/snorkeller-dies-after-being-hit-by-boat-20081231-77og.html , a man was killed when he was struck by a high-speed tourist boat while snorkelling in about 2.5 metres of water near Shark Bay, WA on 30th December.



MARINE REPORTING CONTACT Nos.


According to the web page found at http://www.dtei.sa.gov.au/contact_us , the phone number contact for “Marine faults, jetty damage and navigation beacon faults” is 1800 018 313 and the contact number to “Report a marine oil spill (24 hrs)” is 8240 3505.

RAPID BAY JETTY UPDATE


The old jetty at Rapid Bay is part of the construction site for the new jetty. There is to be no diving at the shore end of the old jetty until the new jetty is opened later this year, possibly not until Easter (10-14th April). Do not plan to dive at the site at all as any such activities may delay the opening of the new jetty even more.

CLUB NEWS


MILDURA DESERT DIVERS CLUB

Congratulations go to Grant (Brownie) Brown for being awarded the Club Person of the Year Award with the Mildura Desert Divers Club, in recognition of his work with the club’s newsletter plus his ‘behind the scenes’ work.

COATAL WATERS DIVE CLUB

Congratulations also go to Gary Doubleday for being awarded the CWDC Diver of the Year (DOTY) Award for the most dives made during the past year. It was a close finish with Gary pipping Dennis Hammond for 1st place by just one dive. Third place went to Rob Giulianetti who was a couple of dive behind Dennis. Full details of the top three placings are as follows: - 1st Gary Doubleday (47 dives), 2nd Dennis Hammond (46 dives), 3rd Rob Giulianetti (44 dives).



MARINE PARKS UPDATE


The Marine Park Outer Boundaries are expected to be released late this month. The Outer Boundaries will only show the size of the parks and contain no detail as to the zones within the parks. The zoning is going to be designed throughout 2009 in consultation with all marine users and the draft zones are expected to be released in 2010 for public comment. Formal submissions can be submitted after the release of the Outer boundaries (early 2009) and the draft Zones (2010). Once the submissions have been considered and plans revised, it is hoped to have marine parks by 2011.

SA SHIPWRECK CENTENARIES


Several SA shipwrecks, such as the SS Clan Ranald and the Monarch, celebrate the centenary of their sinking this year. The turret deck* screw steamer Clan Ranald sank off of Troubridge Hill on 31st January 1909 with the loss of 40 lives.

* (The Clan Ranald is the only example in Australian waters of a construction design known as a turret ship.)

The ketch Cecelia sank at Outer Harbor on 7th March 1909 but she was raised and repaired. She was later lost near Ceduna in 1946. The 3-masted wooden schooner Monarch became wrecked at Wardang Island on 1st April (no April Fool’s) 1909. The wooden schooner Dianella sank at Moonta Bay on 3rd October 1909. There was just one other SA shipwreck in 1909. That was the river barge Hartley that was wrecked opposite the Murray bridge wharf on 23rd February that year. (All wrecks over 75 years old are protected.)

OTHER SHIPWRECK ANNIVERSARIES


The 4-masted American wooden schooner Kona was wrecked 91 years ago at Scraper Shoal, near Cape St Albans, on Kangaroo Island on 3rd February 1917.

Meanwhile, the remains of an 18th C ship thought to be Spanish galleons have been found near Buenos Aires, Argentina. The remains were discovered during excavations for a car park in a marshy area. An archaeologist said that several cannons (cannon?) had been found. Experts are calling the discovery “the biggest archaeological find in the city’s history”.



CLEAN UP AUSTRALIA DAY


This year’s Clean Up Australia Day is being held on Sunday 1st March To register a site for the cleanup, visit: http://events.cleanup.org.au.

UNDERWATER TRAIL PLAQUES NEEDS CLEANING


The Port Noarlunga Underwater Trail plaques may still need some cleaning work done on them. If you are planning to do a dive in the vicinity of any of the plinths, please think to take a plastic brush along with you on your dive so that you can give the face of the plaques a bit of a scrub to remove any growth on them (but please leave edges alone).

SOLITARY ISLANDS


Dive the Solitary Islands with Dive Quest, staying at Mullaway on the beautiful Coffs Coast. Trip Leader – Paul Macdonald. Only $660.00 ex Coffs Harbour. 6 nights, 10 dives 6 May 2009. Includes - 10 dives per person with Dive Quest - 6 nights @ Dive Quest Divers Den, Mullaway - Tanks/weights/airfills - Return airport transfers (if required) Contact Paul Macdonald 0419 819 083, paulmac@paulmacdonaldphoto.com or Val Shipman 08 82947744, info@adventureblue.com.au .

AERIAL BEACH PATROLS


Surf Life Saving SA is conducting helicopter patrols along beaches on weekend and public holidays. Aerial shark patrols by fixed-wing aircraft are being conducted from 11am to 8pm between North Haven and Sellicks on weekdays. The patrols will continue until the end of March.

DECEMBER ISSUE OF “OCEANUPDATE” ONLINE


To view the December 2008 issue of SeaWeb’s “OceanUpdate” (Vol. 13 No. 9), visit

http://www.seaweb.org/resources/documents/OU_119_Final.pdf . This issue includes the following articles: -

Study Reviews Impact of Arctic Climate Change on North Atlantic

How Can Underwater Sound Impact Marine Mammals?

New Zealand Dolphin Species May Be in Danger of Extinction

New Database Seeks to Gather Information on Reef Fish Aggregations

NEW TECHNOLOGY FOR FISHERMEN


What hope have fish got with so much new technology becoming available to fishermen? For example, in 2005, a chemist invented fishing line that changed colour when damaged. “Ropes and fishing lines made of a new plastic that changes colour when damaged or heated can let climbers and fishermen know when it's time to get a replacement. Made of a polymer mixed with a dye, the new material changes colour when its molecules are spread apart. It's a fishermen's worst nightmare: A fish bites, the line snaps! They haven't invented an unbreakable fishing line, but research chemist Chris Weder and his team at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland have created the next best thing, a line that changes colour when too much stress is applied. "It might mean potentially fewer fish will get away because the line breaks, because you're aware of the fact that your line has been worn out," Weder tells DBIS.”

Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/videos/2005/0808-safetyproofing_plastic.htm

And then there’s this: -

“Better Bait - Mechanical Engineers Reinforce Flimsy Fishing Lures

Materials scientists and engineers added reinforcements to flexible plastic fishing lures to keep them from snapping off their hooks. Braiding microfibers into the lures with techniques used in aircraft or bicycle frame construction, adds strength to plasticized lures that contain phthalates.”

Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/videos/2008/0701-better_bait.htm



SHARK SIGHTINGS & ATTACKS


Shark sightings and attacks around the country were back in the news again late in December. I sent the following letter to the editor of an SA newspaper in response to its front-page feature: -

“Ah yes, it's the season of exaggerated shark sightings again (The Advertiser 27/12/08). Not surprisingly, each of the shark sightings listed in the paper occurred on a weekend (Fri to Sun). There was then a two-week gap between the 2nd (& 3rd?) sighting and the next sighting. And apparently not one white pointer shark to be seen! No shark sightings on Christmas Day, but plenty on Boxing Day! Apart from the 23 small hammerheads seen at Middleton on 21/12 and the one hammerhead seen at Grange on Boxing Day, it is quite conceivable that at least half of the other shark sightings listed were just repeat sightings of the same shark(s). Many of the sightings listed occurred at about the same time & location, with one being at the same time & location the next day. I imagine that the days of the sightings were ideal for sighting sharks. More sharks will be sighted whenever there are more people around on beaches, in boats, on jetties and by lifesavers. I see that two more sharks were seen on 27/12 (The Advertiser 28/12, one by a jetty and another one by lifesavers. I imagine that not too many sharks were sighted during the morning of 28/12 due to the cooler, windier conditions. Shark sightings at Henley Beach and Grange between 26th & 28th December may well be the same shark(s). Whilst the death of Brian Guest, due to a shark attack whilst snorkelling for crabs in WA, is certainly unfortunate, a 5m-long white pointer shark in NSW only nudged kayaker Steve Kulcsar whilst he was in the water*. Sharks are not stalkers and predators of humans. It is now more than three years since a fatal shark attack occurred in SA waters. Far more sharks are killed by humans than humans killed by sharks! Yours faithfully, Steve Reynolds.”

* (Visit http://player.video.news.com.au/adelaidenow/#MJGlWMMxXiSPY_eoWWTxAYc5fUIFMksG to view footage of the white pointer shark circling fishing kayakers off the coast at Long Reef.)

MARINE PHOTOBANK


Last month’s news sheet gave details regarding Marine Photobank. The web page found at http://www.marinephotobank.org says that it is “Advancing Ocean Conservation Through Imagery”. All images are free to use for non-commercial purposes. The image collection is constantly growing and diversifying. You can stay up to date on the latest photos by signing up for ‘My New Photo Alerts’. A recent new photo alert was about a deformed sea urchin (marine pollution and trash gallery). The photo and details could be viewed at http://www.marinephotobank.org/secure/gallery-photo.php?gallery_id=3&photo_id=5888. According to that web page, the sea urchin photo showed the effects of chemical pollution on reef inhabitants.

A Shortspine Velvet Urchin, Tripneustes gratilla elatensis, from near a power station outlet of chemically polluted spill, had skeletal deformities and about 75% of the population in the area (Eilat, Isreal) was affected by this deformity. The photo may be downloaded in either low or high resolution. The photo was from a new book by Dr. J. Dafni titled "Eilat's Coral Reefs". Dr Dafni says that “People interested (in) buying this book, showing and describing the high diversity reefs, in close proximity to a thriving town and shore installations” should visit http://http://www.giraphic.co.il/html/dafni_book_info_eng.html .



SDFSA BULLETIN


Attached along with this SDF News Sheet is a copy of the latest issue of our SDFSA Bulletin. This is an electronic bulletin separate to our normal monthly SDF News Sheet. Items featured in this issue of the Bulletin are: -

NEXT MEETING 1

ABALONE FISHING RESTRICTIONS 2

COMMITTEE RESPONSE RE OUR SUBMISSION ON DESAL PLANT 3

MARINE REPORTING CONTACT Nos. 4

MARINE PARKS UPDATE 5

SA SHIPWRECK CENTENARIES 5

CLEAN UP AUSTRALIA DAY 5

UNDERWATER TRAIL PLAQUES NEEDS CLEANING 5

SOLITARY ISLANDS 5

AERIAL BEACH PATROLS 6

DECEMBER ISSUE OF “OCEANUPDATE” ONLINE 6

NEW TECHNOLOGY FOR FISHERMEN 6

SHARK SIGHTINGS & ATTACKS 6

MARINE PHOTOBANK 7

SDFSA BULLETIN 8

FORTHCOMING EVENTS 8

CCSA SUMMIT ON ENERGY IN A CHANGING CLIMATE 8

SEA TURTLE BIOLOGY & CONSERVATION SYMPOSIUM 9

CARAVAN AND CAMPING SHOW 9

CLEAN UP AUSTRALIA DAY 9

OZTeK’09 9

BENEATH THE SEA 2009 9

LONDON INTERNATIONAL DIVE SHOW 9

ADEX 2009 9

2009 LEAFY SEA DRAGON FESTIVAL 9

BSAC’S “2009 DIVE FEST: PARTY ON THE BEACH” 9



Future issues of the SDFSA Bulletin will include lengthy articles about matters of interest to recreational divers. We welcome contributions from our readers.

FORTHCOMING EVENTS


Details regarding many forthcoming events may be found at http://x-ray-mag.com/Latestissue

CCSA SUMMIT ON ENERGY IN A CHANGING CLIMATE


The Conservation Council of SA is holding the last of its 6 summits to develop an environmental blueprint for South Australia on Thursday 5th February. This final summit is on Energy in a Changing Climate. It will be held on from 10am-4pm, at Enterprise House, 136 Greenhill Rd, Unley. It will feature keynote speaker Dr Chris Reidy, Research Director at University of Technology Sydney's Institute for Sustainable Futures, and a panel of representatives from the local government, business and social justice sectors. For further information, contact: policyreview@ccsa.asn.au or phone 8223 5155.

SEA TURTLE BIOLOGY & CONSERVATION SYMPOSIUM


The 29th Symposium on Sea Turtle Biology & Conservation is being held from 17-19th February in Brisbane. For further information, visit http://www.turtlesbrisbane2009.org/ .

CARAVAN AND CAMPING SHOW


The 2009 Adelaide Caravan and Camping Show will be held from February 27 to March 1st. Adelaide Scuba is apparently having a display, which will include a dive tank at the show.

CLEAN UP AUSTRALIA DAY


This year’s Clean Up Australia Day is being held on Sunday 1st March To register a site for the cleanup, visit: http://events.cleanup.org.au.

OZTeK’09


OZTeK’09 is being held at Australian Technology Park in Sydney from 21st to 22nd March. There are some details about OZTeK’09 on pages 7 & 16 of the December issue of Dive Log. Visit www.diveoztek.com.au for more details.

BENEATH THE SEA 2009


Beneath the Sea 2009 will be held in America on March 27-29th. Visit http://www.beneaththesea.org/v2006/index_main.html for more details. (For the results of the recent Beneath the Sea 2008, visit http://www.beneaththesea.org/v2006/photo_contest_2008.html. There are some great photos and also some videos.)

LONDON INTERNATIONAL DIVE SHOW


The London International Dive Show is being held 28-29th March at London Excel. The BSAC will have a stand at the show.

ADEX 2009


The 2009 Asia Dive Expo is being held in Singapore from 3rd to 5th April. Visit www.asiadiveexpo.com or see pages 7 & 77 of the December issue of Dive Log for more details.

2009 LEAFY SEA DRAGON FESTIVAL


The next Leafy Sea Dragon Festival is being held from 17th to 26th April. Visit http://leafyseadragonfestival.com/index.htm for more details.

BSAC’S “2009 DIVE FEST: PARTY ON THE BEACH”


The BSAC’s 2009 Dive Fest: Party on the Beach is being held from 15-17th May at Pentewan Sands Holiday Park, near Megavissey, Cornwall, England. Visit http://www.bsac.com/page.asp?section=2150§ionTitle=Party+on+the+beach for more details.
The Scuba Divers Federation of SA is a member of the following: -

Rapid Bay Jetty Design Reference Group



SARFAC (SA Recreational Fishing Advisory Council)

Fleurieu Reef Advisory Group (Ex-HMAS Hobart)



TRAIL COMMITTEES - SA Trails Coordinating Committee (Office of Recreation & Sport) and Port Noarlunga Reef Underwater Trail South Australian Trails
If you wish to be included on the mailing list for this electronic news sheet, contact Steve Reynolds, the Federation’s Secretary, on sdfsa@adam.com.au for more details.
The SDF supports both Reef Watch & Dragonsearch
Disclaimer – The opinions expressed by authors of material in this news sheet are not necessarily those of the Federation.

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