1687738Well we might have been at work today, but on the beach and underwater in the Seychelles is not a bad way to spend Christmas Day…

With incredible weather and a sea perfect for research diving, we donned the obligatory santa hats and tinsel and headed off to collect some (very serious) coral reef data to help us to assess the health of the reef here in Petite Anse. Ho ho ho… Charlotte certainly looks very serious about it here!

Team WiseOceans has of course been very, very good this year and so guess who paid us a visit? Yep, Santa stopped off on Petite Anse beach on travels this afternoon (well, who can blame him?) and gave out presents to a hoard of very excited children, and two VERY excited WiseOceans Marine Educators. He even had a special throne sculpted out of sand!

So from Charlotte and Lindsay in the Seychelles to all our family, friends and WiseOceans followers around the world, a very merry ‘Fishmas’!

What else have we been up to…

Charlotte: It started out like any other snorkel. Butterfly fish. Check. Surgeon fish. Check. Parrot fish. Check etc… Then, a shriek and a look of panic. “I’ve lost my wedding ring!’ shouted the newly wed bride. We immediately started to look down into the deep. A couple of duck dives down didn’t help – it was just a little too deep for a comfortable search. We took a careful note of the location (a handy and distinctive Lobophylia coral helped to mark the spot underwater) and I promised to return with SCUBA gear to look again.Upon returning to the spot my heart sank. The area was covered in nooks and crannies that the ring could have easily fallen into. ‘I’ll never find it’ I said to myself. Five fin kicks later it appeared right in front of me nestled on the sand bed. I clutched it tightly all the way back not wanting to add any more drama to the day by losing it a second time. When I got back to the beach I could see the honeymooning couple walking along the beach towards me. I held aloft the ring and  – like some scene out of a Hollywood movie – she ran towards me arms outstretched and grabbed the ring from me. Needless to say everyone was VERY happy.

Lesson to be learnt: encourage all honeymooning guests to remove their brand new rings before snorkelling!

6336259And finally…. Spreading the word!We are very pleased with our new notice board which now accompanies our picnic table ‘office’ here at the beach. The Green Fund is supported by Four Seasons Resort Seychelles guest donations, and enables all of the environmental research, conservation and education work that we do here. The new board informs guests about (and celebrates) all of the good stuff that the Green Fund allows us to do, and it has certainly been attracting guests since it appeared. From protecting turtle nests and rescuing turtle hatchlings to installing mooring buoys, the Green Fund and the generosity of resort guests have really made an impact on Petite Anse, so it seems only right that we shout about it. The only problem is that, with all of our plans for 2014 and beyond, we’re going to need a bigger board!