In January 2013 Aquanauts and Dive Tribe held a meeting to strengthen their partnership and bringing it to the next level and also Dive Tribe will bring the Ocean protection in the Pattaya area to the next level. The year 2013 will be a great year for the Pattaya area with big projects that are run under the name DiveTribe with the help of their proud partners and sponsors.
Through this post we want to introduce DiveTribe to the people that do not know them yet and give brief explanation about the exciting year that 2013 will become.
Who is DiveTribe?
They were founded in 2009 by representatives of the diving community in response to serious environmental threats affecting our delicate and pristine eco-system in Thailand.
Under the direction of its CEO, Mr Gwyn Mills, the Dive Tribe has grown from a small team of industry experts into an international group focussed on the protection, preservation and conservation of our marine environment at the same time as promoting sustainable tourism practices. The Dive Tribe is joined by Dr Wayne Phillips, a lecturer in marine ecology at Mahidol University International College in Bangkok. While Wayne advises on the research and educational direction of the Dive Tribe, Gwyn is the brains behind getting it all done. He runs the campaigns for funding, raises public awareness concerning the marine environment and encourages participation in Dive Tribe projects. He also drives for change in the business practices that directly or indirectly support the shark finning industry .
Their Mission Statement is as follows
Dive Tribe’s mandate is the protection and conservation of the terrestrial and marine ecology of Thailand's oceans. This includes the underwater bio-network of coral reefs and the sensitive land ecosystems of the Thailand's coastline. At Dive Tribe’s core is a no compromise attitude for the future. Our primary objective is working towards the protection and preservation of Thailand’s natural resources
DiveTribe's Friends & Family
The other dive shops in the area can (and probably will) join in several projects or events if they want, but as main partners we give our 100% commitment for all projects and will help Dive Tribe in any way we can.
By working closely together with their colleagues at Mahidol University International College and Coral Ecologist Dr Wayne Phillips, Dive Tribe is getting a lot of data and information regarding the status of the reefs and their inhabitants.
DiveTribe also has friends/sponsors around Thailand that help their cause:
- Dragon Capital –Clean Development Investments /Vietnam
- Hardrock Hotel/Café Pattaya
- Sharkskin /Technical Wetsuits
- Amari Orchid Hotel Pattaya
- Oceanic/Hollis Dive Equipment
- SSI Scuba School International
- Scuba With Mike
- DMCR (Department of Marine & Coastal Resources) Thailand
Dive Tribe are actively looking for more sponsors to help facilitate their future projects to keep Pattaya’s marine environment protected and thereby give back a much needed resource to help increase tourism in Pattaya.
So what makes 2013 an important and exciting year?
This year Dive Tribe and their partners will run several major projects in the area, which we explain below. We would love to see the help of everyone with a heart for the underwater world!
DiveTribe Projects & Activities
Mooring buoys help alleviate the pressure on the reefs by encouraging boats (of which Pattaya has many) to stop dropping anchors on precious coral reefs.
With the help of their major sponsor, Dragon Capital from Vietnam, Dive Tribe acquired a handheld Torque screwdriver (9 Tons of Torque) to create mooring lines in the Pattaya area. These mooring lines are going to be strong and the systems have proven themselves already in other parts of the world. The moorings can hold several dive boats at the same time.
Aquanauts’ team will have team members from various scuba organisations next to some Aquanauts Staff and the pioneer of Pattaya-scuba.net.
In the coming months the different teams will conduct training sessions on land and under water before they actually start the mooring installations.
The actual mooring sites will be defined in a later stage, but initial ideas go out to Koh Sak, Koh Larn – Hat Nuan and Koh Rin.
The Department of the Marine and Coastal Resources (Thailand Government Agency) have given their approval and cooperation to this project. They will help in ensuring the maintaining of the mooring lines and will start with the process of creating legal actions on damage and theft of the lines.
The goal is to start the actual moorings in April 2013.
Dive Tribe and their dive-partners are setting up teams at this moment and are actively looking for companies or individuals to step forward & protect a reef through sponsorship.
E mail the Dive Tribe to learn more about adopting and protecting a reef firstname.lastname@example.org
They will be happy to come and give a presentation or alternatively come and speak to Daniel at Aquanauts and he will put you in touch with Dive Tribe.
Shark Tagging & Release
In 2012 DiveTribe held a major shark release project that became global news. This year they are going to hold a shark release again, but this time they will extend the project including the tagging of the sharks.
Last year Dive Tribe was able to keep the sharks at the aquarium. This year to extend the research part, Dive Tribe will build shark tanks/quarantine areas at their Research Centre.
Dive Tribe procure the sharks from the fishermen and explain to them (on purchase) that some sharks are almost extinct and should remain in the oceans. It is hoped that Dive Tribe will be out on the fishing boats tagging sharks for data analysis in the near future.
Once the sharks are in the tanks Dr Wayne Phillips & the participants from the Mahidol University will conduct DNA tissue sampling, measure, weigh and tag the sharks.
On 09 March 2013 the sharks will be released by DiveTribe and their partners. The tagged sharks will be released at pre-determined sites; the exact location of these sites will remain confidential for obvious reasons and to ensure the integrity of the research.
Again this year they are aiming for a globally coverage on different news media (TV, radio, online) because CITES are meeting in Bangkok while the release is happening. The more coverage there is, the stronger the message that will be sent to CITES for them to begin to protect our sharks.
After the release, Wayne and his research assistants will monitor the sharks’ movement, etc. together with the DiveTribe and their Partners. And we will keep you updated on this via our website. Anyone who spots a tagged shark (or ray) on their dive should inform the research team by uploading relevant information to the Dive Tribe website.
You are able to join the shark release day! You can release a shark or just join the day to follow the process. The costs for this day maybe higher than a normal day of diving, but your money will contribute to purchase and upkeep of sharks , for tags and all other Dive Tribe Projects.
Keep an eye out on the announcements and book your shark release with Aquanauts!
Eco-conservation courses on University level
Ever did a PADI Project Aware Speciality, like Fish ID or Coral Reef Conservation, or PADI Underwater Naturalist? Then you know a bit about the reefs and underwater aquatic life.
These courses are high level and tend to teach people the basics about reefs and aquatic life.
In collaboration with Mahidol University of Bangkok Dive Tribe has created several Eco-Conservation courses, that will be roll out around May 2013.
These courses range from 1 day courses to full university-level internships, and can be followed by anyone who is interested to learn more about our underwater world, their population, the need for protection and how to conduct research and the rebuilding and restoration of our underwater world.
Aquanauts Instructors will be teaching Dive Tribes Courses on Reef Ecology from May onwards and will be trained by Dr Wayne Phillips on the necessary steps needed to carry out the many detailed procedures. Data Collection/Fish Counts/Invertabrate Counts/water Quality Testing /Reef Monitoring /Reef Reconstruction etc.
We are hoping to attract anyone who has an interest in these courses from Universities worldwide to individuals with an interest in marine biology to please get in touch and work with us on restoring and conserving our important reef systems.
How does Aquanauts support?
To raise funds we have placed donation box in our shop in Soi 6 to ask our Divers to help and support our reefs and ocean. On the boat there is a tip/collection box. From this we will donate 50% to Dive Tribe, the other 50% will be divided between our hardworking staff.
What will the future bring???
Still want more information?
For more information you can off course follow our posts and social media! We will publish new information about the separate projects when the time is there.
We also would like to invite you also to start following and supporting (!) DiveTribe