......by a long way, as demonstrated by Coastwise member Chris Mandy, who took Coastwise members away from the (sometimes !) cold water and limited visibility of North Devon's coast.
Chris, long-time scuba diver and member of the Ilfracombe and North Devon Sub-Aqua Club, holidays in the Greek Islands, and showed a dazzling range of wildlife and colour from surface to depth in the Med (pictured top R).
Chris explained the loss of colour as the infra-red end of the light spectrum is absorbed at depth, so artificial light is necessary to bring out the colours.
Members saw a range of animals, including (2nd from top R) photographing starfish with a waterproof compact camera, (3rd from top R) sea slug Spotted Doris, (4th from top R) Elegant Sea Slug, (5th from top R) anemone Golden Zoanthid, (6th from top R) Moray Eel, (7th from top R) Scorpion Fish.
The Mediterranean appears to holidaymakers to be a benign environment, bu it is up to 5000' in depth, and can be subject to violent storms. Warm water enters through the straights of Gibralter, but cools, sinks and returns lower down, creating significant currents. Fishing is still a major industry and Chris showed the small net meshes extensively used and how they spare few fish. In addition, many are snagged on rocks.