[Coral-List] Coral Diving Award

John McManus jmcmanus at rsmas.miami.edu
Tue Dec 22 16:52:44 EST 2009

I think that if we include 'scientists' in the formal sense as those who
have contributed peer reviewed scientific literature, that eliminates a
number of dive masters who have dived more days each year as adults than
they have not. 

Among the formal scientist group, I suspect that Jack Randall may indeed be
the leader. I believe that he dived in every sector of every major coral
reef area, and had trouble finding new species of fish to look at in waters
above 30m several decades ago.

Others who have spent enormous amounts of time underwater on a broad variety
of reefs include Jim Maragos and Tom Goreau. However, they had later starts
than Jack. 



John W. McManus, PhD
Director, National Center for Coral Reef Research (NCORE)
Professor, Marine Biology and Fisheries
Coral Reef Ecology and Management Lab (CREM Lab)
Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS)
University of Miami, 4600 Rickenbacker Causeway, Miami, 33149
jmcmanus at rsmas.miami.edu      http://ncore.rsmas.miami.edu
 Phone: 305-421-4814   Fax: 305-421-4910

  "If I cannot build it, I do not understand it."
              --Richard Feynman, Nobel Laureate


-----Original Message-----
From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
[mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Delbeek,
Sent: Tuesday, December 22, 2009 12:09 PM
To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Coral Diving Award

I would think that Jack Randall would be at the top if not very near to it.
He has been diving since before there was a NAUI/PADI. I would say
early-50's maybe? There is a recent bio of him here:


The other person might be Charlie Veron?


J. Charles Delbeek, M.Sc.
Senior Aquatic Biologist, Steinhart Aquarium
California Academy of Sciences
55 Music Concourse Dr.
San Francisco CA 94118

phone (415) 379-5303
fax (415) 379-5304
cdelbeek at calacademy.org

-----Original Message-----
From: coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
[mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] On Behalf Of Jim Hendee
Sent: Tuesday, December 22, 2009 7:44 AM
To: Coral-List Subscribers
Subject: [Coral-List] Coral Diving Award

Greeting again...

    As the subject of a good story and for purposes of a follow-up
award, Dave Fuzzo has asked if he could query Coral-List subscribers to
determine who has dived longer and in more places than any coral
scientist.  He will follow-up in January, but for the time being, I
guess some of the qualifiers we can think of are:

    * Does "any coral scientist" include deceased divers?  Like, does
      Jacques Cousteau pass muster? 
    * Which leads to the next question:  How do we define "scientist?" 
      Peer-reviewed publications?  What about those folks who dive
      thousands of hours on, say, the GBR for the benefit of the
      science, but themselves don't publish?  I know guys who dive every
      single week of the year, and they have an education in marine
      biology or oceanography, but they don't publish.
    * When considering places dived, does that include repeat dives, or
      unique sites, and if so, what about spatial separation of said
      sites?  (Like, does a dive 100 m down the beach count?)
    * What constitutes the proof for purposes of the Award?  Logged
      dives in an official log for, say, PADI?
    * Should there be an official end date for the tally (say, June, 2010)?
    * What should the name of the Award be?

    Whoever "wins" almost doesn't matter, because the stories that will
come out of this would be accounts of some great adventures and some
nice chronicles in coral reef research.  The top head-soakers, whoever
they may be, certainly deserve recognition, that's for sure, and I hope
they get international recognition beyond what they might already have. 
After all, it's a significant risk with every dive, as TG could
certainly attest.

    Just some thoughts for the coming weeks...


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