Issue #183, 2018
With the Spring weather and a raft of exciting news, there is a wonderful anticipation in the air! Our brand new state-of-the-art Quicksilver Dive training centre is set to welcome adventure seekers and dive enthusiasts to Port Douglas. And while Quicksilver Dive is ready to launch, Pro Dive Cairns is celebrating 35 years of excellence with yet another PADI achievement award.
We are thrilled to report on the resilience of our natural wonder as sections of reef that had experienced coral bleaching in the summers of 2016 and 2017, are showing great recovery with new coral growth. Meanwhile, Quicksilver is proud to be involved in an exciting Australian-first coral restoration research project with the potential to help support reef resilience in many locations across the Great Barrier Reef and other reef systems in the world.
Celebrating PADI International Women’s Dive Day, an almost all female crew aboard Silverswift took centre stage on the Great Barrier Reef.
It has been a sensational whale season with minke and humpback encounters galore across all of our reef experiences. Pictured above, this humpback put on quite a spectacle for passengers aboard dive and snorkel vessel Silversonic (Poseidon in the background) with Skipper Shane Down saying it was the best humpback action he has seen all season!
We hope you enjoy catching up with the latest news from the Quicksilver Group.
Our state-of-the-art Quicksilver Dive Centre, the only dedicated dive training facility in the Port Douglas region, will be opening…
Our state-of-the-art Quicksilver Dive Centre, the only dedicated dive training facility in the Port Douglas region, will be opening its doors (and pool!) to adventure seekers and dive enthusiasts in the coming weeks. And we're Licenced for Thrills!
As a 5 Star PADI Training and Instructor Development Centre, a range of PADI accredited courses are available for beginners to advanced divers looking to further their skills in a professional, safe and fun learning environment.
The Quicksilver Dive Centre features a four metre deep training pool, classrooms and offices, and a specialty dive retail shop. The swimming pool features a unique above ground design with innovative viewing wall.
The 4 Day Open Water Course will comprise two days at the training centre followed by two day trips to the Great Barrier Reef aboard our Port Douglas based dive vessels, Poseidon and SIlversonic, for training and certification dives.
The 3 Day Open Water Course with eLearning, offers a great option for those thinking about learning to scuba dive but are short on time. Classroom theory is replaced with online eLearning which can be completed in your own time before arriving in Port Douglas. Following a day of pool training, you'll join two exciting day trips to the renowned Agincourt ribbon reefs to become a certified diver.
With our awesome selection of over 35 World Heritage Agincourt ribbon reef sites, there really is no better place in the world to learn to dive than the Great Barrier Reef!
Check out our website at www.quicksilverdive.com.au
For more information, contact Quicksilver Dive at [email protected]
One of the most exciting and topical research projects Quicksilver is currently involved in, is a Coral Restoration…
One of the most exciting and topical research projects Quicksilver is currently involved in, is a Coral Restoration Project at our Agincourt 3 platform. Coral reefs around the world are susceptible to many types of impacts both natural and man-made. The small coral bommie under restoration was impacted by cyclonic waves a few years ago and with an unstable substrate, natural recovery was impeded.
Simply, the project involves the installation of three steel mesh panels of 1.5 x 3 metres size to grow coral ‘recruits’ connected to a power source. This is the first time this type of project has ever been conducted in Australia and the Great Barrier Reef. It was installed in July 2018 and shown in this short video clip.
Tony Baker, Managing Director of the Quicksilver Group said “We are extremely pleased to be part of this innovative Australia first research project. We believe this reef restoration project can build resilience into our site and enhance this specific coral bommie. We hope within one year the “powered” coral will have no visual signs of the support structures. By making this research project visible to our snorkellers, we are confident that our passengers will gain a further understanding of reef systems and how Quicksilver is being pro-active in assisting the rehabilitation of coral reefs.”
This ground breaking research project can be viewed by our guests who are snorkelling at the platform. It is being conducted in partnership with researchers from Reef Ecologic and Quicksilver’s Reef Biosearch team of marine biologists under permit from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.
It is hoped that this rehabilitation technique will assist in making areas such as this research site, more resilient to stress in future natural disturbances. If successful, this technology could help support reef resilience in many locations across the Great Barrier Reef and other reef systems in the world.
After two hot summers there are great sights at Agincourt 3 Reef where we are seeing successful colonisation…
After two hot summers there are great sights at Agincourt 3 Reef where we are seeing successful colonisation of new corals. Not only have we seen good recovery of previously bleached corals, but we're also seeing recruitment from the last two summer’s spawning.
These photos show a snapshot of new corals spawned in either 2016 or 2017 that have successfully attached to the reef. After experiencing cooler water conditions at our sites this year we are certainly hoping for a good spawning this summer!
While the robustness of the recovery at our various sites off Port Douglas and Cairns is heartening, it's important to remember the Great Barrier Reef faces challenges, both natural and man-made, and we all need to keep working to reduce our impact.
Pro Dive Cairns has been acknowledged by PADI, the world's largest recreational diver training organisation, for 35 years…
Pro Dive Cairns has been acknowledged by PADI, the world's largest recreational diver training organisation, for 35 years of outstanding customer service.
Since commencing operation back in 1983, Pro Dive Cairns has become one of the world’s most respected and awarded scuba training schools and liveaboard operators. In that time, over 150,000 people have chosen to take the plunge and learn to dive with Pro Dive Cairns, more than any other Australian dive school.
Accepting this latest award, Paul Lim, General Manager of Pro Dive Cairns said, “This award is an outstanding testament to the dedication and professionalism of all our staff and the quality of training delivered. This is all backed up by our fleet of three premium liveaboard vessels and of course an amazing variety of quality Great Barrier Reef sites in which we conduct our training dives and liveaboard experiences. We have shared a strong and successful relationship with PADI over 35 years and look forward to many more.”
With a team of 67 highly qualified staff, Pro Dive Cairns’ 5 Star PADI Career Development Centre is located in Cairns CBD. Three 25 metre multi-million dollar liveaboard boats Scubapro, Scubapro II and Scubapro III, conduct 3 Day / 2 Night Trips visiting a selection of 19 exclusive Great Barrier Reef sites.
For more information contact [email protected]
Pictured with the award from left to right are: Perry Roos, HR Manager; Tomoo Asai, Operations Manager; Cleo Legge, Reservations Manager; Liza Robbins, Reservations; Paul Lim, General Manager.
It's been a sensational whale season this year with many awesome and surprising encounters for our passengers and crew.
It's been a sensational whale season this year with many awesome and surprising encounters for our passengers and crew.
From the inquisitve minke to show-off humpbacks, here's a few special highlights to enjoy.
While on a Pro Dive Cairns liveaboard trip, diver Mikael Kulig captured this mesmerising video of a minke whale as he joins him during a dive. What an incredible experience!
Poseidon passengers and crew had an amazing experience when this curious juvenile humpback swam in to say hi. Poeidon was moored at Helms Deep site at Agincourt Reef when he decided to be part of the snorkelling group.
Crew in the water kept the snorkellers in a tight group as the 3-4 year old whale swam around for 20 minutes. Skipper Dan Hill said, ”The level of curiosity was extreme which I have not seen before and he made at least 20 passes. Poseidon diver Liam Platt was in awe “this whale seemed to be even more curious than a minke whale. This is a once in a lifetime event for someone who spends every day on the reef”.
The video was captured by Poseidon skipper Dan Hill.
PADI International Women’s Dive Day on 21 July saw our dive and snorkel vessel Silverswift with a crew of…
PADI International Women’s Dive Day on 21 July saw our dive and snorkel vessel Silverswift with a crew of amazing ladies take centre stage on the Great Barrier Reef.
Quicksilver Group has an amazing talent of crew but this day was all about celebrating women's growing contributions to what was once a very male dominated industry, and encouraging the next generation of female divers and instructors.
But it wasn't just our lady divers celebrated on this day. Silverswift, was led by Skipper Amanda Matthies as the vessel travelled from Cairns to experience three amazing reef sites on the Great Barrier Reef. Amanda was supported by an almost all female crew from the customer service team and four female diver instructors. Making up the complement of crew, the guys joined in celebrating the achievements of their female colleagues.
Tony Baker, Quicksilver Group Managing Director said, “With around 650 staff across the company, our female diver instructors are very much a part of ensuring our passengers have sensational days diving the underwater world. It was great to see Silverswift join in this day, as did our crew from Pro Dive Cairns aboard their liveaboard dive vessels. Pro Dive Cairns has a growing number of female dive instructors and they currently represent one third of the team. We congratulate them on this PADI International Women’s Dive Day on the amazing dedication they have every day on the Great Barrier Reef.”
Did you know Quicksilver's platform at Agincourt Reef 3 is home to Australia's most remote official Australia Post…
Did you know Quicksilver's platform at Agincourt Reef 3 is home to Australia's most remote official Australia Post letterbox?
To celebrate International Year of the Reef, Australia Post has launched a new set of "Reef Safari" stamps, and of course, there was only one place to launch them!
You can view Australia Post's release here, filmed at Quicksilver's Agincourt Reef 3 platform and featuring our very own Dr Glen Burns, Marine Biologist.
The creatures featured on the colourfuls stamps are:
Here's a lovely trip down memory lane.. Thanks to Deb Cole for visiting us on Green Island recently and…
Here's a lovely trip down memory lane.. Thanks to Deb Cole for visiting us on Green Island recently and for sending us this wonderful old photo taken on Green Island in 1965 by the "Bikini Tree". Deb is pictured in the photograph as an 8 year old with her mum while on a Queensland family holiday, 53 years ago.
After finding the photograph, Deb knew she had to visit Green Island again and is now on a journey recreating her family holiday.
Unfortunately the tree is no longer on the island but she had a wonderful visit and memories of her childhood holiday.
In near perfect conditions with blue skies and gentle winds, 128 swimmers of all ages took to the…
In near perfect conditions with blue skies and gentle winds, 128 swimmers of all ages took to the clear waters of Green Island for the 13th annual Great Adventures Green Island Ocean Swim.
Swimmers aged from 12 to 65 competed in 500m, 1.5km and 3km events while the fun “Nippers” swim for the under 12 year olds saw 18 enthusiastic future ocean swimmers enjoy a taste of swimming in the Great Barrier Reef.
We were delighted to welcome back many long term local competitors in addition to swimmers from across the State and country including Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Sydney, Melbourne, WA as well as international competitors from Japan, UK, USA and Hong Kong.
But it was again the talented young Cairns swimmers taking out the wins in all categories. In the 3 km swim, 15 year old Zac Tabuai won the men’s event for the second consecutive year, while 16 year old Ebony Crowe won the Women’s. In the 1.5km swim, 15 year old Alicia Davy broke the course record by 13 seconds to take out the win and 13 year old Rhys Kurukchi won the men’s. The 500 m swim was won by 12 year Bryce Menzies.
Once again we offer special thanks to Surf Life Saving Queensland for their wonderful support and community spirit in conducting in-water safety for the event and to the Cairns Crocs Triathlon Club for assisting with the timing.
Thanks to Gregg Maxwell of Maxwell Media for the fabulous footage of the event.
Returning to Port after a day on the Reef, it couldn't have been timed better as Poseidon made a guest…
Returning to Port after a day on the Reef, it couldn't have been timed better as Poseidon made a guest appearance at a wedding ceremony on the foreshore of Rex Smeal Park.
Onboard our romantics at heart and quick thinking Poseidon crew Lindsay and Shay, show 101 uses for a flotation noodle! It was a beautiful touch and we wish the happy couple, Hamish and Taylor, a wonderful future together.
Thanks to Port Douglas Wedding Photography for the main photo.
We were delighted to welcome Ed Halmagyi - better known as "Fast Ed" from 7 Network's Better Homes and…
We were delighted to welcome Ed Halmagyi - better known as "Fast Ed" from 7 Network's Better Homes and Gardens Show aboard to experience Quicksilver's Outer Reef Cruise to Agincourt Reef. Ed swapped his Chef's hat for snorkel gear while filming a segment for the show, taking time out to chat with Hayley, one of our knowledgable marine biologists and also took part in an amazing snorkel tour with one lucky UK family!
It was the stars of the Great Barrier Reef that 17 year old American actress and singer, Isabela…
It was the stars of the Great Barrier Reef that 17 year old American actress and singer, Isabela Moner, came to see with her family and was thrilled to experience her first scuba dive aboard Silverswift. Isabela is currently appearing in a major role in “Sicario: Day of the Soldado” and is also known for her work on Nickelodeon in “Transformers: The Last Knight” and the animated movie “Nut Job 2: Nutty By Nature!”
Quicksilver Group is proud to support many community events and is pleased to be associated with the Cairns…
Quicksilver Group is proud to support many community events and is pleased to be associated with the Cairns Tennis International Pro Tour, returning for its ninth year.
Mascot Terry the Tennis Ball proved to be a very popular guest when he bounced in to visit the Great Adventures crew heading out for a day on the Reef.
Th Pro Tour event takes place from 14 - 23 September and is a pinnacle sporting event which attracts National and International players, offering a prize pool of $50,000.00 USD and world ranking points.
Good luck to all the players!
On many divers’ “bucket lists”, guests aboard Pro Dive Cairns liveaboard trips…
On many divers’ “bucket lists”, guests aboard Pro Dive Cairns liveaboard trips will be able to experience one of nature's rare spectacles, the annual phenomenon of coral spawining on the Great Barrier Reef during exciting night dives. Our marine biologist experts predict it will occur around 26-28 November this year. Predicting the date is not an exact science but we know a few factors come in to play such as the moon cycle and specific water temperatures (greater than 26 degrees celcius) tides, salinity levels and day length can also affect the timing. Spawning happens 2-3 hours after sunset, which scientists believe is timed to ensure most of the plankton feeders are asleep, creating a greater chance of pollination for the corals. And it’s romantic too!
Dreaming of a Green Christmas, Green Island that is - with a…
Dreaming of a Green Christmas, Green Island that is - with a sumptuous buffet lunch at Green Island Resort’s Emeralds Restaurant on the Great Barrier Reef. A Great Adventures fast catamaran will whisk you away so you can kick back and relax knowing all the hard work (and the dishes!) is done for you by the talented kitchen brigade. The buffet of fresh seasonal produce, seafood and traditional delights also includes a two hour drinks package. Seats are limited and bookings essential, call Great Adventures on 4044 9944.
The Shovel Nose Guitar Fish is a complex creature; falling into the family of the ray although possessing a body that closely resembles a shark. These bottom feeders hibernate under the sand in much the same way as a ray to avoid detection from both predators and prey.
One of the more interesting things about the Shovel Nose Guitar Fish is the reproductive cycle, which is ‘ovoviviparous’. Ovoviviparous is where the embryo matures in an egg inside of the mother, which is typical of the ray family. In a similar manner to sharks, the Shovel Nose Guitar Fish gives birth to live young, usually in a yearly litter of approximately 28 pups and often in pairs/twins. Almost immediately after birth, the young are independent and go off to fend for themselves. Play guitar!
Introducing....Gary Savins, who has been busy heading up the launch of our brand new Quicksilver Dive Training Centre…
Introducing....Gary Savins, who has been busy heading up the launch of our brand new Quicksilver Dive Training Centre in Port Douglas. A dive fanatic, Gary opened and operated his own scuba diving school in Singapore in 2011 and along the way, he’s clocked up over 4,800 dives for leisure and teaching! After relocating back to Australia in 2017 Gary is now continuing his passion for teaching, mentoring and tourism and is looking forward to sharing new adventures with our students at Quicksilver Dive.
We spent three weeks "Down Under" and one of the things we had to do was see the Great Barrier Reef. Our tour group booked the all day snorkel cruise with Ocean Spirit and it was the best experience we had on our whole tour. Sam was our marine biologist and she was a godsend. She not only narrated the snorkel tour but also helped the beginners feel comfortable with the water when it got a bit rough. I had originally been a bit cautious about the snorkeling because of the weather but it turned out to be an experience that I will never forget. Seeing the wide variety of sea-life was amazing. There were countless variety of colorful fish, endless species of coral, giant clams, and sea turtles. Back on the Cay itself, some of our group watched the variety of bird that inhabit the area. The time flew by and before we knew it we were back on the boat, heading back to Cairns. A glass of champagne to toast our adventure was a perfect ending to the day. I would definitely recommend Ocean Spirit to anyone and everyone. Thanks again to Dave O and Sam. You guys were great and we will never forget you and the trip.
L, Colorado, US