Our People – Simon Strudwick
PADI Scuba Diving Instructor (M.Sc. Education)
Eco Dive’s newest team member having joined us for this high season just before Christmas
A reformed hacker, secondary school teacher, travel junkie and self-proclaimed water hater. He had to be ‘forced’ to do his open water course by his girlfriend whilst travelling through Honduras and found his life’s great passion (when he saw a sea turtle for the first time). He has since been writing for dive.in magazine and diving in Egypt, Mexico, Belize, Barbados and our beautiful Grenada.
Simon’s goals include one day becoming a PADI Course Director, and, to experience diving in Southeast Asia. His favorite scuba experiences include seeing sea turtles and sharing his passion for SCUBA diving, particularly with those who are new to the sport. A few of Simon’s favorite creatures include the trunkfish, sharp-nosed puffers, and rays and he looks forward to seeing his first whale shark or ‘the Thing’ (seen often on our reef night dives here in Grenada!). Simon assures us that he is not addicted to spearing the invasive Caribbean Lionfish and insists that he “can stop any time I want … honest”
Simon brings fresh enthusiasm to our Eco Dive team and is someone you are sure to meet if you are joining us this spring for a PADI course, refresher or upgrade. Welcome Simon and we hope you and your family enjoy Grenada as much as we do!
Dive Site – Northern Exposure
Dive profile 15’/5m – 60’/18m
This relaxing dive over an undulating reef reveals thriving communities of colourful soft and stony coral. Beautiful gardens of flower, brain and sheet coral are accented by iridescent azure vase sponges and lacy, wafting sea fans. Overlapping plate formations of star coral tower like stacks of enormous pancakes. Schools of creole wrasse, grey and blue chromis, french grunts, blue tangs and damselfish are common. The occasional juvenile nurse shark, sea turtle or passing-through predator mackerel or barracuda can also be found. With a variety of sand patches on the shallower top side of the reef and a surprise little shipwreck that appears out of nowhere on the sand patch on the eastern edge of the reef this dive site offers a nice and easy training dive location or critter hunting and relaxed certified dive. A great choice for our day stop cruise ship guests and a must for anyone joining us on package or as a repeat guest.
Feature Creature – the ‘Thing’ (Eunice roussaei)Identification of the Thing is needless to say still in the works. With more taxanomic research needed and a variety of reportedly similar species in the region this evasive little creature is a curiosity and a fun highlight to any dive. Most often seen by divers at night because of their sensitivity to light they are rarely seen for more than a quick glimpse and very rarely seen out during the day. Dark brown to reddish with seven long banded tentacles which extend from the head and first body segments, this is definitely a creature well suited to an oversized horror movie doppelganger.
Despite their appearance these creatures are harmless to divers and spend most of their time in the recesses of the reef out of sight. With a maximum length of 6 feet, the ability to retreat very quickly and a shiny purple/yellow/orange/pink/burgundy colouring the Thing can be quite a surprise on a dive and an accomplishment to spot or to photograph.