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Best Practices Guide for Shark and Ray Tourism Now Available

March 12th, 2017

The guide, Responsible Shark and Ray Tourism: A Guide to Best Practices, was released on the 3rd March to coincide with UN World Wildlife Day. Project AWARE, WWF and the Manta Trust collaborated to produce the guide, which they say is the world’s first practical guide for operators. It was designed with tourism operators, NGO’s and communities in mind to assist them to develop and maintain well managed shark and ray tourism operations and to raise awareness of the need to protect endangered species. The guide consists of a suite of tools including posters, scorecards and checklists.

Information for divers
The guide is aimed at organisations and operators, however there is a host of information that responsible divers should familiarise themselves with prior to your next diving holiday. Were you aware that you should not wear sunscreen when shark cage diving? How close should you swim towards manta rays or sharks? Do you know that mantas have a blind spot and you should not approach them from behind so you do not scare them? Are you familiar with where you should position yourself when at a manta cleaning station? All these questions and more are answered in the guide.

Representatives from the Manta Trust and WWF offered some insight into the thought behind the creation of the guidelines. Isabel Ander, from the Manta Trust, shared her view on the guide’s focus on operators. “Lack of best-practice guidance can often leave operators confused about how to assess the impact and improve the sustainability of their operation,” she added, “we sought advice from scientists and the industry to help bridge that gap and deliver a best-practice guide – the first of its kind in the world.” “Shark- and ray-focused eco-tourism has great potential as a conservation strategy,” said Dr Andy Cornish of WWF. “If properly designed and managed, it can provide alternative direct and indirect economic benefits to local communities and economies. Yet sadly there’s limited practical guidance out there.”

Enquire today and about our recommended operators who practice responsible liveaboard tours. When you book your diving holiday with Dive The World, you will also be supporting the charities that we make annual contributions to: Sharklife Conservation Group and PeTA.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Saving the Green Sea Turtles on Australia’s Raine Island

February 15th, 2017

A little known island plays a very important role in the survival of green sea turtles. Sir David Attenborough: “A marine paradise that plays host to one of the most spectacular ocean migrations on the planet. This is Raine Island…”

rain-island-green-turtles_image-courtesy-of-andrew-dustanRaine Island (situated on the outer edges of the Great Barrier Reef, North Queensland), is a unique and important nesting site for green turtles. As many as 60,000 female green turtles make the journey from their feeding grounds to lay their eggs on this tiny island. During the nesting season it is one of the world’s largest populations of green turtles. They swim from as far afield as Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, the Torres Strait and the West Pacific.

Unfortunately this annual event is under threat. Both adults and eggs are dying. Rising sea levels have caused tidal inundation, killing the newly laid eggs that cannot survive underwater. The island’s landscape has also changed resulting in as many as 2,000 adult deaths annually from falls and entrapment in rocks. This situation has added to the other threats, such as pollution, habitat loss, boat strikes and over harvesting, which contribute to them being endangered.

green-turtle-hatchlingA five year project to protect and restore the island’s critical habitat began 18 months ago. The Queensland Government, BHP Billiton, the Traditional Owners and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation are collaborating on the AUS$7.95M project. The project aims to ensure the future of key marine species, including green turtles and seabirds. To achieve this their efforts will be focused on beach engineering, sand replenishment, fencing, turtle tagging, remote sensing including video recording and weather stations, tide and sea level monitoring and 3D modelling using GPS survey technology.

The project has been making use of drones to monitor the turtle activity and the initial results are very positive. It is estimated that in the 2015-2016 nesting season at least 400 adults and many hatchlings have been saved by the initial efforts of the project. This number is expected to increase as more of the island is reshaped and pool fencing is extended. This investment will help the survival of the species and allow for more green sea turtle hatchings to swim to some of your favourite diving destinations!

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


30% Discount on Red Sea Aggressor in First Half of 2018!

February 15th, 2017

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Indonesia is DIVE Magazine Readers’ Top Dive Destination!

February 4th, 2017

Divers across the globe have voted and the results are clear, Indonesia is their top dive destination of 2017!

DIVE Magazine gives their readers an opportunity to have a voice and vote for their top three dive destinations over a six month period each year. Indonesia is the readers favourite by a large margin, with three times as many votes compared to the runner-up, Papua New Guinea. The Philippines came in as the third favourite diving destination.

Indonesia is a vast archipelago made up of over 17,000 islands located in the middle of the ‘Coral Triangle’. This ‘Garden of Eden’ has 20% of the world’s coral reefs and is considered to be one of the most biodiverse locations on our planet. Diving opportunities are diverse and outstanding. Depending on where you choose to visit, you can expect big pelagics, drift dives, World War II wrecks, muck diving and close encounters with whale sharks.

Indonesia offers so much to choose from. If you prefer liveaboard diving trips or diving resort vacations, our experienced Dive The World team are on hand to share with you their vast knowledge about this magnificent diving location. Together we can help you to choose the best Indonesian diving trip for you.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Misool Eco Resort Pledges US$50 per Guest to Conservation

January 19th, 2017

Misool Eco Resort has committed to increase the funding for their marine conservation foundation, Misool Baseftin in 2017! They will donate US$50 per guest at their resort, and they are asking each guest to match their donation.

What is the Misool Basefit Foundation?
Misool Eco Resort is located on the island of Batbitim in Raja Ampat. In 2005 it established the initial No-Take-Zone (425 sq km) with the agreement of the local village of Yellu. (Papuan villages retain traditional tenure rights over the sea.) In 2010, Misool was approached by community elders from a second villiage and the No-Take-Zone was extended to 828 sq km.

misool-eco-resort_1The Misool Baseftin Foundation was established in 2010. The foundation is aptly named, in the local lingo baseftin means protecting or looking after. The foundation views conservation as an interaction bewteen environmental, social and educational elements and is dedicated to protecting marine life in its Marine Protected Area (MPA) in Raja Ampat.

The foundation currently has two patrol boats and teams. The rangers work together with the local communities to agree upon, and to implement stringent consequences for offenders. The fines imposed on transgressors are donated to the community where the offence occured. This system ensures community support for the foundation and its aims and is reducing the number of incidents. Over a relatively short period of protection (between 2007 and 2013), scientific studies have confirmed that on average, the biomas has increased by over 250% in the protected areas!

With the No-Take-Zone now covering an area of 1,220 sq km additional funding is required to protect this invaluable asset. ‘Our goal is to create a sustainable funding model and ensure Raja Ampat’s spectacular reefs are protected for generations to come,’ said Marit Miners, co-founder, Misool Eco Resort. He added: ‘Inviting our guests to match the donation that our business has made on their behalf is a powerful way to engage our guests and give them the opportunity to protect what they love.’

misool-eco-resort-raja-ampat_shawn-heinrichsThis is a bold move from Misool and one that we hope other industry leaders will emulate,’ said Marcel Bigue, Director of Marine Programs at WildAid which has helped fund the foundation. ‘WildAid has partnered with Misool Baseftin for a decade, and we continue to be inspired by their commitment to this extraordinary pocket of the underwater world. Misool Eco Resort’s Guest Match Initiative speaks loudly to those who want to be a part of nature’s future.’

Their new sustatinable funding model is estimated to raise approximately US$ 25,000 annually from the resort’s donations. This amount could double if if each guest matches Misool’s donations. This will be a significant contribtion towards protecting this area that lies in the heart of one of the world’s richest areas of biodiversity. Read more about Misool Baseftin and find out how you can contribute to their work, or even better book your Raja Ampat diving resort vaction and experience it for yourself!

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


New Hawaii Reef Fish Named After President Obama

December 30th, 2016

American President, Barak Obama, has been honoured by having a new species of fish named after him. The small pink and yellow coral fish has received the official scientific name, Tosanoides obama.

tosanoides-obama-1-1This new species was discovered on a dive to 300 feet at Kure Atoll, within the Hawaiian Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. This is the same marine conservation area that President Obama expanded by way of his executive authority under the U.S Antiquities Act in August this year. The reserve was expanded to cover an area of 582,578 square miles, making it the largest permanent marine protected area on Earth.

NOAA scientist Randall Kosaki, the chief scientist on the cruise when Tosanoides obama was discovered shared why discovering this new species is so important. “The new fish is special because it is the only known species of coral-reef fish endemic to the Monument (meaning that the species is found nowhere else on Earth). He added “Endemic species are unique contributions to global biodiversity. With the onslaught of climate change, we are at risk of losing some of these undiscovered species before we even know they exist.”

“We decided to name this fish after President Obama to recognize his efforts to protect and preserve the natural environment, including the expansion of Papahānaumokuākea,” said Dr. Richard Pyle, Bishop Museum scientist and lead author of the study. “The spot on the males is reminiscent of President Obama’s campaign logo,” said Pyle. “It seemed especially appropriate for a fish named in honor of the president.”

kona-aggressor-iiThis is one of two new species that has been discovered this year in the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. Don’t miss you opportunity to dive the rich Hawaiian waters. Book now and join a discounted cruise on selected dates to Kona Island and Hawaii with the Kona Aggressor II liveaboard in 2017.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Fly Direct from Frankfurt to Phuket with Thai Airways

December 12th, 2016

koh-tachai_judy-gTraveling from Europe to Phuket is now even more convenient with Thai Airways. The national carrier of the Kingdom of Thailand is now offering three direct flights from Germany per week. Boeing 777 flights depart from Frankfurt on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays and after approximately 11 hours land in Phuket International Airport.

You can look forward to traveling to your Thailand diving holiday with the airline that is rated 13th in the Skytrax World Airlines rankings.

Not sure where to go or how to dive Thailand? Liveaboard, diving day trips or diving resorts, we have them all. Our Dive The World team has immense personal experience diving in Thailand and are on hand to assist you in choosing the perfect diving holiday.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


New liveaboard Caribbean Explorer II – Saba & St Kitts

December 8th, 2016

We have a new destination and liveaboard in the Caribbean. Now you can experience the delightful islands of Saba & St Kitts on board the excellent MV Caribbean Explorer II. Part of the reputable worldwide Explorer fleet, the Caribbean Explorer II takes up to 18 scuba divers on 7 night cruises in the clear warm waters that lap agaisnt these paradise shores. As a new liveaboard on our site you can save $$$ by booking now!

The MV Caribbean Explorer IIWhat’s the scuba diving like? Saba is a 5 square mile (13 square kilometers) island that lies 28 miles (45 km) south of St. Maarten. The marine park is situated around the entire island and has been completely protected for the last 15 years. You can expect to see a wide variety of reef fish and pelagics such as schools of blue tangs, goatfish, parrotfish, large Nassau groupers, horse-eye jacks, turtles, and of course a variety of sharks.

There are many dive sites around St. Kitts, the locations selected will be influenced by weather and currents. Diving off St. Kitts offers divers both reefs and an array of wrecks that are easily accessible for divers of all levels and experiences.

You can save $$$ on your next Dive The World booking with this new liveaboard launch offer.

Saba Marine Park & St Kitts – 8D/7N – Up to 25 dives
Standard double/twin bed cabin – US$ 2,095 per person
Book before 8 January 2017 and get a US$ 100 Discount Voucher off your next dive vacation with Dive The World!

Open air relaxation on the Caribbean Explorer IICruise price includes: Cabin accommodation with air-conditioning, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinking water, soft drinks, hot drinks, local alcoholic drinks, dives (as detailed in the trips above), experienced English-speaking divemaster(s) (max 18 divers per DM), tanks, weights and weightbelts.

Price excludes (mandatory, unless customer provides own): Dinner on the final evening, scuba equipment (US$ 150 per trip), torch, dive computer, dive insurance (see our insurance program for a competitive quotation), bed tax US$ 115, fuel surcharge US$30. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival (cash or credit card).

Optional extras: Nitrox fills for enriched air certified divers (US$ 150 per person per trip), torches, diving computer, dive insurance. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival.

This offer can be used in addition to other special offers including your Dive The World returning customer 5% discount. Voucher is transferable. See here for the discount voucher Terms and Conditions.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


New Myanmar liveaboard launch offer – MV Thepnampa

November 30th, 2016

The new Myanmar liveaboard MV ThepnampaThere is a new kid on the block when it comes to Myanmar liveaboards! Introducing MV Thepnampa – a European operated liveaboard running affordable scuba diving trips around the Mergui Archipelago.

Renovated in 2016, this 22m motor yacht takes up to 12 divers, so you can expect plenty of personalised service and small dive groups. The dive deck has 2 showers and 2 toilets for added comfort.

MV Thepnampa is a low budget option in Burma. Shorter trips take in Tower Rock, Shark Cave, North Twin, Seafan Forest, Western Rocky and Volcano. Longer trips can include Black Rock and Burma Banks.

You can save $$$ on your next Dive The World booking with this new liveaboard launch offer.

Mergui Archipelago – 6D/5N – Up to 14 dives
Standard double/twin bed cabin – US$ 853 per person (THB 29,900)

Mergui Archipelago – 7D/6N – Up to 21 dives
Standard double/twin bed cabin – US$ 1,010 per person (THB 35,400)

Mergui Archipelago – 8D/7N – Up to 24 dives
Standard double/twin bed cabin – US$ 1,280 per person (THB 44,900)

Book your cruise on the new and exciting MV Thepnampa by 30 December 2016 and get a US$ 100 Discount Voucher off your next dive vacation with Dive The World!

Thepnampa's comfortable standard cabinCruise price includes: Cabin accommodation, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinking water, soft drinks, hot drinks, dives (as detailed in the trips above), experienced English-speaking divemaster (4 divers per DM), tanks, weights and weightbelts, torch, transfers to and from Ranong hotels.

Price excludes (mandatory, unless customer provides own): Scuba equipment (US$ 14 per day), dive insurance. Burma visa and park fee is US$ 220. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival (cash only).

Optional extras: Alcoholic drinks, dive computer. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival.

This offer can be used in addition to other special offers including your Dive The World returning customer 5% discount. Voucher is transferable. See here for the discount voucher Terms and Conditions.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Philippines Declares Largest Marine Protected Area!

November 28th, 2016

The Philippines has declared new Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) totaling over a million hectares (approximately 2,676,990 acres). The new MPAs include a staggering 1,013,340 hectares in Cagayancillo and an additional 80,000 of Aborlan in the province of Palawan. These areas cover both coastal and offshore waters.

Philippine SirenThis successful initiative has come about due to collaborations between the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and Foundation Segré. The aim of declaring the new MPAs is to rebuild fish stocks of the Coral Triangle by changing the way the local residents in the area view protected areas. The Philippine MPAs are more of a fish-production station for future generations rather than no-go zones.

The WWF has been trying to put people’s needs first by focusing on the value of the MPAs to maximise fisheries production instead of merely protecting biodiversity. “Through well-managed MPAs, coastal communities can realize that conservation is the surest way to secure tomorrow’s fish,” Joel Palma, WWF Philippines President and CEO.

This strategy is working. Cagayancillo fisherman have experienced the positive effects due to the protection of nearby Tubbataha Reefs, and clamoured to also have their waters protected. “Since WWF introduced marine conservation in early 2000, we have been vigilant. The reefs sustain our need for food and income. For years, we have had an abundant fish supply. I really believe some of them come from Tubbataha, especially the big ones,” shares Cagayancillo-based conservationist Nison Abados.

Tubbataha Reef PhilippinesCagayancillo is now the 1557th and largest MPA in the Philippines. (The Philippines hosts more MPAs than any other country in Southeast Asia.) Unfortunately many MPAs are not properly administered. The WWF and Philippine authorities are addressing this by ensuring that collaborative management, which is key to effective MPAs, is being introduced in the new MPAs. Roles, responsibilities and benefits are shared between the stakeholders (these include national and local authorities, communities, the private sector and other resource users.) Local fishermen are aided by gaining exclusive rights to fisheries either in or near the MPAs. They are also empowered to help them improve the health and productivity of their fisheries. These vital safe havens for marine life ensure sustainability as well as attract tourists to the area.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Improved Indonesian Air Travel Safety Is Recognised

November 7th, 2016

It is now easier and safer to travel to your Indonesian scuba diving holiday destination with more recognised airlines to choose from. Earlier this year, the European Commission updated it’s Air Safety List and removed a ban against three more Indonesian airlines.

Raja Ampat ReefLow cost carriers Citilink and Lion Air and full-service carrier, Batik Air are now allowed to fly into European airspace. They currently do not offer services from European countries, however you can now rest assured that they do meet European safety standards. You can confidently book your Asian connecting flights with these carriers.

They join Indonesia Air Asia and Indonesia flag carrier Garuda Indonesia who were removed from the list in 2009 and 2010 respectfully.

Garuda Indonesia have also announced that they have been upgraded from a category 2 to a category 1 and will once more be able to fly to the United States. This change was announced by Indonesian Transportation Ministry’s Directorate General of Air Transportation, Mohammad Alwi. The airline is expected to open flight routes between Jakarta to New York and Los Angeles in 2017.

Dewi NusantaraWith all the available air travel options now available for you to choose from, you can comfortably book your Indonesian liveaboard holiday today. Our Dive The World friendly and efficient travel consultants are available to assist you with all your Indonesia scuba diving questions and will make your diving holiday booking a hassle free experience.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Specials Galore This December

October 30th, 2016

blue-pealAll too frequently we get caught up in the hum drum of everyday life. Unfortunately the mundane takes over and we forget to live in the moment, appreciate the now, and soak up the wonders that surround us. Now is the time to act, do not wait for the chords of ‘auld lang syne’ to be playing to make your new year’s resolutions. Decide now where you want to go and what you want to experience. Dive The World is here to help make all your dreams a reality by providing you with lots of great offers for liveaboard trips this December.

Like many divers, your list may include making more time for scuba holidays, booking that liveaboard trip or possibly go that extra mile to encounter that one elusive must see amazing sea creature.

amiraYou are spoilt for choice this December with the amazing variety of discounted liveaboard trips. You can select a festive diving holiday destination close to home or book an adventure far away. Why not make the most of the special prices and book two liveaboards in neighbouring destinations such as Thailand and Indonesia or Sudan and Egypt, or you can book the prized trip to the Galapagos that may have seemed just out of your reach? Seize the day and end 2016 the same way you intend to live in 2017! Send us an email today for more information on these incredible offers.

astreaWe are asking you, why wait? Dive The World can help you to make your new year’s resolutions happen before the end of 2016 and help you save $$$. There is no need to compromise, we are offering you discounted liveaboard trips in 12 different countries! It couldn’t be easier, go to our Dive Liveaboards Calendar where all our December discounted liveaboard trips are conveniently highlighted for you. Click on the liveaboard trip of your choice, preview the extensive details we provide and simply email us or send us an enquiry.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


Thailand Mourns Venerated King Bhumibol Adulyadej

October 23rd, 2016

King Bhumibol AdulyadejThai King Bhumibol Adulyadej passed away peacefully on the Thursday, 13th October 2016, at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok. King Bhumibol was much loved by the Thai people and was the world’s longest reigning monarch. He was coronated in 1946 at the age of 18 and was the Thai constitutional monarch for seven decades.

The King’s passing will be recognised with flags flying at half-mast for 30 days and the country will observe a year of mourning. His body will lie at the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, or Wat Phra Kaew, inside the Grand Palace complex for an undisclosed duration. No date has been set for the cremation. Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn will ascend the throne, however he has requested time to mourn with the country before his coronation.

While the Thai nation is in mourning, the government has requested that “joyful events” are avoided and that the public not hold any “entertainment activities” during the month. Sombre, black or dark, clothing will be worn by the Thai nation during the mourning period and visitors to the country are advised to do the same.

If you have already planned your diving holiday to Thailand, there should be no reason to change your plans. Along with your dive gear, sun block and guidebooks, it is more important than ever to pack some cultural sensitivity. The advice for UK citizens, “if possible, wear sombre and respectful clothing when in public; check local media regularly and follow the advice of the local authorities”. “Access to entertainment, including restaurants, bars, and shopping areas may be restricted and you should behave respectfully when in public areas,” says the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). There may be some disruption of commercial and public services, especially during the next 30 days. Thailand’s lese majeste laws are among the strictest in the world. The Dutch foreign ministry also reminds travelers to Thailand to avoid any “declarations or discussions critical of the royal family”.

During your diving vacation to Thailand be respectful in dress and conversation when in public areas, keep updated with local announcements and seek confirmation on appropriate attire in resorts and on liveaboards.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


10% Early bird discount On Sawasdee Fasai Similans Cruises in 2018/19!

October 21st, 2016

The lovely new Similans liveaboard MV Sawasdee Fasai MV Sawasdee Fasai is an impressive steel-hulled Thailand liveaboard in the mid price range.

It runs 4 night trips to the Similans, Richelieu Rock & Khao Lak and you can save a few $$$ by booking now.

Dive The World has the following special offer for you:

There is a 10% early bird discount valid for 2018/19 season bookings made before 31st August 2018

Similan, Richelieu Rock & Khao Lak
5 Days 4 Nights 14 Dives
Book now any scheduled trip November 2018 – April 2019
Budget twin cabin: was US$ 883 (THB 28,700) Now US$ 795 (THB 25,830) per person
Standard twin/double cabin: was US$ 1,067 (THB 34,700) Now US$ 960 (THB 31,230) per person
Deluxe twin cabin: was US$ 1,160 (THB 37,700) Now US$ 1,044 (THB 33,930) per person
Master twin/double cabin: was US$ 1,313 (THB 42,700) Now US$ 1,181 (THB 38,430) per person
Save up to US$ 264 per couple!
Offer valid only for bookings made before the end of August 2018. For single bookings only, not charters.

The saloon on board Sawasdee FasaiCruise price includes: Cabin accommodation with air-conditioning, breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinking water, hot drinks, nitrox fills for enriched air certified divers (it must be ordered in advance), return transfers to/from the boat from Phuket or Khao Lak areas, dives (as detailed in the trips above), experienced English-speaking divemaster(s) (4-5 divers per DM), tanks, weights and weightbelts, travel accident insurance.

Price excludes (mandatory, unless customer provides own): Scuba equipment (US$ 14 per day, to be paid in advance, Similan and Surin park fees at approximately US$ 6 per day, with an entry fee of US$ 14 per park. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival (cash or credit card).

Optional extras: Alcoholic drinks, soft drinks, torches, dive computer, 15 ltr tanks available for rent (approx US$ 9 per day), dive insurance. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.


A Win For Sharks and Rays at Cites Conference

October 11th, 2016

Silky Sharkes in Jardines de la Reina_David DoubiletThe triennial Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (Cites) meeting wrapped up in Johannesburg, South Africa, last week. The 17th Conference was attended by delegates from most of the 182 member countries as well as a host of interested parties from international governmental organisations, animal protection groups, wildlife trade proponents, scientists and the media.

Cites is a multilateral treaty, with the aim to ensure that international trade in wild plants and animals, does not threaten their survival. During the conference decisions are made detailing specific plants and animals to be listed under one of the three Cites Appendices. The Conference includes discussions and decisions regarding rules of procedure to capacity building, enforcement, measures to combat illegal trade and reduce wildlife products, and the engagement of local communities. With so many interested and invested parties, all with their own agendas, it is remarkable that once decisions are made, most of the member countries agree to implement the them.

The outcome of this year’s conference gave cause for both celebration and disappointment. Fortunately there were more reasons to celebrate, especially for marine life. Silky sharks, thresher sharks and mobula rays were all listed on Appendix II, joining hammerhead, basking, requiem, mackerel and whale sharks that are already listed under the same category.

Ray Revillagigedos Archipelago_image courtesy of_Guy StevensThe Appendix II listing now provides protection for these species, as well as “look-alike species”, (i.e. species that look similar) for conservation reasons. As Appendix II listed species, these sharks and rays are not currently threatened with extinction, however they are recognised as being in need of protection and the Appendix II listing makes certain provisions for this. All international trade in these species will now require the relevant export permit or re-export certificate. Under Cites, import permits are not required, however certain countries have stricter measures in place and import permits are required. Cites stipulates that specific conditions need to be met in order for the relevant authorities to issue permits, the most important being that trade in a species will not adversely affect their survival in the wild.

There is much to be done to ensure that the decisions made during the conference are implemented. Many liveaboard scuba diving vacations contribute to the protection of these species by way of the park fees that are collected from divers. Book your diving holiday and know that you are contributing to the survival of marine life.

Contact Dive The World right away on +66 (0)94 582 7973 / (0)83 505 7794 or send us an email.