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Abyss Scuba Diving
Come in the shop and grab your gear for a day out diving.
Wander on in and be greeted by our smiling staff, grab your tanks then head down to the boat ramp and start to get geared up. Remember you only need to put your wetsuit up halfway, before getting on the boat, as you have the boat ride ahead, it’s better to be comfortable. Marty our skipper will greet you at the boat and help you get everything on board. Don’t forget, if you don’t have a dry bag, it is better to leave it on land! Otherwise, your belongings could get a little wet.
Get yourself sorted on the way out as it is not a very long boat trip before you will be at the Dragon’s Lair! The dive site is located on the northern head of Botany Bay, just past Henry’s Head and Pokemon City. As well as sitting across the bay from Cape Solander in Kurnell National Park.
Once you have arrived, get everything sorted and do your buddy checks before splashing on in to enjoy the depths with some of our amazing marine animals on offer.
The dive at Dragon’s Lair is quite simple, however, if you do manage to lose your sense of direction, do not fret! Just send up your SMB, finish your safety stop and Marty will keep an eye on you as you come to the surface. At this site you can find a small cave and what looks like a submerged islet. This area is located a small way off the main section of the site. To find the main part of the reef, if you are at the 18-21m mark turn and head East, from there you will drop over a wall and the bottom substrate of the reef sits at around 24m deep. The main headings for the wall run in a general North-South direction. So, make sure you keep an eye on your compass and you and your buddy should be fine with navigating this site.
As you are swimming along keep your eyes peeled for the swim through known at this site. This is marked by a large flat rock that has come to rest on an angle against a wall. Make sure you keep your fins up though! As we don’t want your buddy who is behind you to experience a black out as they begin their swim through.
If you have read our fun blogs on different sea creatures and plants, you will find a mix of sea squirts and sea sponges! With this article you should be able to tell the difference between the plants you are finding at this dive. Mainly, the presence of Sea Tulips at this site, with their mix of colours. Make sure to bring your torch to capture the beautiful colours of these tulips.
As you are diving along, check under all the overhangs and in between the crevices to spot the elusive Eastern Blue devil fish that is known at this site. However, if you haven’t already guessed. The main attraction at this site, is the magnificent Weedy Sea Dragon! If you didn’t know already, these unique creatures float along camouflaging themselves to move and behave like kelp. To not draw attention to themselves for predators. Each Weedy Sea Dragon is unique. Like us, their scale designs are individual to each creature, like a fingerprint. At this time of year (Spring) you will notice that the males are carrying the eggs on the underside of their tails. See if you can spot any males with eggs.
Schools of yellowtail are very prominent at this site, they may be surrounding you as you start your dive and descend down the anchor. With many varieties of leatherjackets also known for cruising around in the depths.
As I mentioned in the Magic Point blog, check under the overhangs and in any crevices for resident cuttlefish, whether giant or not! These creatures are also masters of disguise, so they may be difficult for you to find.
If macro photography is more your style, then zoom in close to the reef beds and try your luck at spotting some Nudibranchs. As this site is known for its colourful sea tulips and coral, the nudibranchs will also have vibrant colouring to assist in their camouflage efforts.
In cooler temperatures– the Port Jacksons are residents all over Sydney dive sites in mating groups. The deeper, quieter sites are their preferred - go to, as there is less disturbance from commercial noises in the bay. Test your knowledge of Port Jackson Sharks versus Crested Horn Shark identification. Port Jacksons are known for their lighter colouring and their clean, crisp markings that join in a triangle shape on the top of their back. Whilst the Crested Horn Sharks are darker in colouring with blurred marking lines. Their corkscrew shaped eggs can be found with tendrils wrapped around coral, to hold them in place.
Make sure you are keeping an eye on your buddy’s air supply as well as your own. You haven’t been too distracted by the beauty of this site, I hope.
Once, you have made your way back on the north – south wall. You should find the anchor with no problem if you remembered to spot a marking on the way down. Head back up the anchor and complete your safety stop. Before re-entering the ‘real world’ to change your tanks over during your surface interval. Then heading back in for dive two, to see what else you can find.
Hope you enjoy the wonder of Dragon’s Lair.
By: Gabby Studdy