Diary

A new shore site for scallop bashing!

Well it is new to the Duo-diver crew but obviously not to the guy who told us about it!

And no you can all whistle I am not going to divulge details as you would all descend and scrag what is a very fruitful site, very bountiful indeed as even the nunkie picked up a few!

It is coming up to that festive period so there is a demand for scallops so the nunkie up and off to Oban to scrag a few and I also urged him to pretend that the water was tropical and dive around Port Gallanch in a muck diving style.... that is slow and close to the sea-bed, rather then his usual five feet up and looking for scrap or scran, but that is subject to another article.

So in his own words, converted to English for those people not used to a Northumbrian accent here we go!

We had heard abou the site from the chaps at Dive Oban and it was a bit of a shock, we had never thought that there would be any number of scallops in the area but rather than drive round to the Fairy Stones, which invloves a long drive over a short distance on crap roads and a ferry ride we decided to give it a go, after all what was to loose? Half an hour of in-water time and a tank of air to prove one way or the other that there is a site quite close and relatively prolific.

In water I wasn't too sure of the site as the bottom comprised of stones about half the size of a fist interspersed with mud and only a very few patches of that lovely crushed shell and clay mix which simply screams scallops. But after a couple of minutes I started to find scallops and most were those great big ones, well to be honest they were all big ones with no sign of any smaller scallops which would 'grow on'. Now that was a bit concerning when thinking ahead a few years but here and now Christmas 2019 is the need and the site fulfilled that and it was only about twenty minutes into the dive where the booty bag was full to overflowing and the prime objective of the dive was achieved. the site is a gud-un Shane!!

With plenty of air left it was time for an investigation dive so leaving the sack with a partially inflated lift bag as a marker in ten meters of water off I went.

In common with loads of stretches of water, both salt and fresh, the area has been used as a midden since time immemorial and whilst there were loads of intact old bottles there were only two that merited being picked up, one because it is genuinely old and the other because the hard calcium based coraline had almost covered the entire bottle and it looked quite cool. There is a one glaring genuine difference between the inshore seas here in Northumberland and up at Oban and that is at Oban there are very few lobsters at Oban, not many edible crabs either, on this dive there was an area where someone had dumped 'lots' of six inch diameter ceramic drain-pipe and despite looking in them all there were no lobsters in residence...... had this been at Beadnell there would have been a lobster in every hole, with longer pipes having a blue fiend at both ends.

I suppose that having seen the explosion in crustaceans at Babbacombe over five years it doesn't take long for a population to re-establish itself, it's a case of a critical mass of breeding size lobsters and not too many predators.

So there you go the nunkie managed to scrag a few scallops, next I will be writing about his 'muck diving UK stylee' exploits, spoiler alert, he had fun!

Dive safe

RichW

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