Day 6 and still finding plastic!

Day 6 and still finding plastic!

I headed out to the House Reef this morning to complete Open Water Dive number 2 with my students and after they had finished their dive flexible skills we went for a swim around and a clean up. The reef was beautiful this morning with 30 meters visibility, lion fish, flounders, unicorn and butterfly fish and .... trash :-( Todays clean up efforts have amounted to 12 plastic bottles, 1 can, 2 glass bottles, 2 pieces of rope - one was wrapped around branching coral and had to be carefully removed, 4 cardboard drinks cartons, 9 plastic food wrappers, one flip flop and one shoe. I'm starting to notice that a lot of the small plastic bottles still have lids on which have holes drilled in. The butterfly fish and sergeant major fish are also starting to circle around me every time I dive. I strongly suspect that the bottles are being used to puff fish food out into the water to attract fish and then the culprits are leaving them behind. I've also noticed that the type of trash I am collecting under water is sadly the same as the trash I have picked up and seen on the beach which means the reef is being polluted by the island not trash being washed over from the mainland as many of the locals will often say. Hopefully if more people are seen doing clean ups the message will filter through that a clean beach and healthy reef is going to bring more tourists to the island and improve the economy. On an up note, my students seemed to really enjoy helping to pick things up along the way and they kept dropping their findings into my clean up bag. Other than the trash it was a lovely dive today with lots of fish and beautiful colors!