Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Saga Continues

What was supposed to be a positive exposure for sharks continues to drive the wrong headlines in the media. Of course The Sun is known for its sensationalism and yellow journalism.

I think the headline says it all:
Diver feeds killer sharks - by hand.

Good exposure for human - bad exposure for shark. I just refuse to believe that people in the shark diving industry are surprised when the media spins a story.

Disclaimer on sharks and this blog

Decided to add a disclaimer on our blog - prominent on the right side so it cannot be missed - to not have to explain ourselves every time we write about our interactions and love for sharks and to avoid any confusion or criticism from readers. We do what we do and by no means do we encourage anyone else to do imitate. Sharks are potential dangerous and should always be treated with the utmost respect.

How we portray sharks is very personal, we do not have a "hugging policy" - although we sometimes hug them and have been accused of promoting these types of actions, we tend to humanize them and refer to sharks as cute - because we think they are...Sometimes we refer to them as "our babies" - we know they are not ours, we also know they belong to no one - not even a government or country - sharks are masters of their domain...I think you get where we are coming from.

Hope this sets the record straight.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Tiger Sharks Rock!!!

Some people think that I "ride" sharks. These folks neither know me nor do they understand tiger sharks. I do not "ride" sharks - I am not a cowboy nor am I a sharkboy for that matter. I caress sharks, as you can see me here just being nice with one of the Tiger Beach beauties.

Photo: Paul Spielvogel

I am still rather weak, now more than before because I am back home in Cochabamba located at an altitude of 2.600 m which makes it difficult to breathe normally. All I need now is a well balanced combination of rest and exercises.

"Doc" Gruber has sent me this - and I thought the best I could do is to share the clip with you. It shows how very cool tiger sharks are.



If you have's seen this one it will make your day! Turn the volume up, go full screen and enjoy. The film was made by Duncan Brake while we were doing a program at Tiger Beach last October.

I think it is just beautiful and shows how serene these tiger sharks really are.


PS: Please be aware of the fact that diving with sharks can be potentially dangerous. Do NOT closely interact with sharks, touch them, feed them unless you are very experienced and know exactly how to interpret their body language. While it might look easy and harmless to interact with sharks the way I do, I do NOT encourage this type of underwater activity.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


After three weeks Wolf is finally coming out of the hospital. It has been over one month since his trip to South Africa was "canceled" unexpectedly. He will stay about one more week in Sao Paulo with friends and then head back to Bolivia to start his healing process. I think one of the things he is really looking forward to is internet access and being connected again - inbox must be overflowing.

My assumption is that he will post on the blog very soon...

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Wolf is out of ICU

I was waiting for this day for almost three weeks - I was finally able to speak to my old man - he is out of the intensive care unit and in his own room in the hospital. We spoke for a long time - first minutes were pretty emotional. What can I say - it is good to have him back.

He will likely spend another week in the hospital and then a few days in Sao Paulo before heading back to Bolivia.

What a trip it has been - what lies ahead? SHARK DIVING WITH THE OLD MAN :)

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Wolf is Awake

He is up - but very disoriented at the moment.  Apparently he pulled some tubs out (the ones to assist with breathing) on his own in good ol' Wolf fashion and was pissed off that he was still in the ICU.  Obviously he did not know what was really going on - tomorrow morning his head should be cleared - but all organs and vitals are positive.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Oceanminds: Facebook underwater

I tried out Oceanminds, a social network that describes itself as "Ocean preservation through social networking" was founded by Nico Danan and Cliff Etzel. Think of Facebook but for ocean enthusiasts. I believe this just launched today, but people are already signing up.

Says Nico and Cliff: "
We decided it was time to regroup the water tribe in one place on the web to promote the environmentally conscious lifestyle of the Ocean Minded people. Exchange ideas, content, photo, video and share projects to promote a healthy environment and most of all to continue to enjoy the Blue Planet for generations to come!"

Definitely worth checking out...

Monday, April 06, 2009

Wolf update

While yesterday was a bad day - today was a lot more positive. The fever is gone and his heart seems to be doing better. The doctors are happy with his progress today, however, they did say that he is not yet safe, and that the recover process could still take some days. He is still in the induced sleep and pretty much unresponsive.

Sunday, April 05, 2009


There comes a time when a son (or daughter for that matter) realizes that their dad is not Superman. It came pretty early in my family, about 25 years ago my father was diagnosed with cancer in the colon, small intestine, spleen, stomach, and a few other organs in the surrounding area. The doctors had given him a 20% chance of survival...he did - but it was the first time I saw him vulnerable (went back diving with catheter - for chemo- in chest).

8 years ago he had thyroid cancer...he survived (Back diving in 3 months)

6 years ago - heart stent procedure (went back diving after 3 months)

5 years ago he had a love bite from a reefie....he survived (after 3 hours working on him feverishly to stop the bleeding - went back diving with the same sharks 3 months later)

Now...he is fighting stomach cancer - while the operation in itself went well, this morning he had a collapse and had to be induced into a sleep (not coma). His heart was irregular, lungs taking on some water - he has been stabilized. Turns out now he may have an infection, so he is now receiving new antibiotics. He will likely be in this sleep for a few days, the Doctor says he is critical but stable. We need to wait a few days while he remains in this sleep recovering - may be a good thing, when he was awake he was stressing and nervous.

So you see - my father is anything but Superman, survivor and fighter yes - he did promised me that we would be diving in Tiger Beach this June (or November considering the recovery)...I also think he has some other work that he need to finish...

During section where we are filming ourselves notice we interrupt as the first Tiger came

Friday, April 03, 2009

Help Bring Sharkwater to China

I have already covered this in the past, but I recently got an email from Neil Hammerschlag campaigning to bring Sharkwater (I still cannot get over the DVD cover) to China.  By now everyone knows where I stand in reference to the movie and Rob Stewart...HOWEVER...I really do believe that showing this movie in China will have an impact.  I am surprised it has been taking so long - should have debuted there before showing in the US (I know, I know)

You can donate at Save The Blue - a non-profit which Neil is part of.  With the donation you will also receive a shark pendant - I already got mine.