This week’s dive report

During the week we had a slight cut with about 60 feet of visibility. It was beautiful on the water. Conditions remained excellent all week until the gale on Saturday and Sunday. As you know, in the Keys we live and die in the wind, so that made it a bit more difficult after that.

We had lots of classes this week and were fortunate enough to certify five local Key Largo EMTs – thank you for your service! On their training dives we encountered a big goliath grouper which is always a fun treat. These curious giants have been described as puppies of the sea and can even make a noise similar to barking.

A goliath grouper encountered during a training dive. ERIC BILLIPS / Contributed

Next week’s dive report

The winds continue into the next week and are actually getting “very strong” with wave heights pushing 6 feet on Friday. It seems to be a week of “earthly activity” type. What’s your favorite way to spend a breathtaking day?

Conservation update

Islamorada Dive Center took out a few groups on Saturday and planted around 30 more corals at Victory Reef. It is a deeper dive site at the edge of the reef. It is important to plant corals in scientifically studied locations to support coral restoration efforts, and these can be at varying depths.

Key Dives will host the I.CARE Coral Plantation Dives this Saturday if the wind calms down. The two stores alternate every week.

Conservation advice

Remember that corals are alive and dislike some of the ingredients found in sunscreen. It’s best to opt for “reef-safe” sunscreen when running or use sunshirts, hats, buffs, and sunglasses for cover.

I.CARE advice

As hurricane season approaches, it’s good to remember that coral reefs play a vital role in resilient shorelines. They help dampen storm surges and wave energy coming towards our homes and businesses by acting as natural dikes. Healthy reefs are more effective than man-made dikes in protecting the shore.

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