This past week, conditions were pretty good. We had a little bit of rain, but the visibility was spectacular. Have you ever dove in the rain? It’s a really cool experience to witness weather from beneath the surface. Sometimes, you can even hear the pitter-patter of raindrops on the surface. Trust me, it’s cool. 

Thursday was Veterans Day. We are huge supporters of our military and were fortunate to host many events for our military families. During this time of year, we love hosting the Army’s parachute team, the Golden Knights, for some great diving. They dive every weekend with us for a month, exploring the local reefs and having a great time together as a team. It’s always a good time, and we hate to see them leave.

To our friends, the Golden Knights, and to all active and inactive military personnel, we thank you.

Next Week’s Dive Report

This week’s forecast calls for strong winds. I like to say it might be a “Honey Do” list kind of week. If so, we will stay on land and get ready for Thanksgiving. There’s plenty to maintain and prepare and even more to be thankful for. 

Conservation Update

We christened the new I.CARE coral nursery on Friday night. It was a stellar turnout, with the community really showing up to learn more about this conservation gem in the community. 

If you haven’t visited the I.CARE nursery yet, it is a must-do. Located at Bud N’ Mary’s Marina in Islamorada and run by Mote Marine Laboratory, the nursery now hosts endangered corals and branching sponges. Soon, it will also have clinging crabs. 

This is intentional, because it’s important to restore the entire ecosystem together. Each part relies on the other in ways we don’t fully understand yet. This innovative coral restoration approach is ground-breaking, and it’s so cool that it’s happening right here in Islamorada.

Conservation Tip

Education and outreach are an incredibly important part of conservation work. The new coral nursery in Islamorada is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about this important restoration work.

I.CARE Tip

If you want to take what you learn on land to the next level, consider joining us on a coral restoration dive trip. It’s an immersive, hands-on experience you won’t forget.

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Eric Billips is is the owner, captain and instructor at Islamorada Dive Center and Floridia Keys Dive Center. He specializes in scuba, rebreather, spearfishing and captaining in the Florida Keys