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February 2024 Newsletter

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Vol. 52 No. 02

The Dolphins of Biscayne Bay and Their Ecology (In-Person Speaker)

Little is known about the long-term effects of environmental changes on coastal dolphin populations. This question is significant in the light of coastal marine habitat loss, pollution, and climate change. During this presentation, we will explore the home range, social structure, habitat use, and diet of a resident population of bottlenose dolphins in Biscayne Bay, a heavily impacted waterway that has experienced significant habitat degradation over the past decades.

Jessica Carde's academic background includes a Bachelor’s in Biology, a Bachelor’s in Psychology, and a Master’s in Marine Conservation & Policy from Stony Brook University, and a Doctorate in Marine Ecology from Florida International University. Her dissertation research focused on coastal dolphin behavior and ecology in response to anthropogenic threats and climate change. In collaboration with The NOAA Southeast Fisheries Science Center, her project investigated the impacts of disturbances and environmental changes on the habitat use, behavior and distribution of resident bottlenose dolphins within Biscayne Bay. Jessica is continuing her research through FIU to further elucidate the behaviors and habitat use of this population and assess exposure to other potential risks, such as boating activity, contaminants, and noise pollution.


Overseas Diving Update

Upcoming trips 2024:

  • BVI (British Virgin Islands): Aggressor liveaboard - May 11-18, 2024 - Sold Out - wait list only
  • Little Cayman Beach Resort July 6-13, 2024 - We are offering this trip for sale at the January Meeting
    • IMPORTANT - if you live out of town and you are interested in this trip without the group airfare from MIA, Marie York and Nils would like to know ASAP.
    • If you want a copy by email of the trip description and signup form please reach out to trip lead Marie or Nils
  • Solomon Islands: Bilikiki live aboard, New dates: July 24 - Aug 3, 2024
    • We have found a land based extensions in PNG - 10 (maybe 7) days after Bilikiki: Tufi Resort - very close to Port Moresby - and serviced by a private airline (good for our photographers)
    • At this time Nils wants to hear from everybody interested...
    • The airfare from Fiji to Solomon and back is selling out fast
    • Updated trip details - see overseas travel pages or click here: Trip details _ 2024
    • We have added a recent Under Current article to the trip description - downloadable pdf.

The "far-out future" - 2025 and beyond

  • Lureen and I attended DEMA in New Orleans - and looked at future exotic trips

  • Before we make commitments and decisions on behalf of the club we are interested in hearing from our past travelers - say Fiji and Indonesia: How likely are you to join the club on another exotic trip - and if you are interested - what destinations?

2023 - Trips:

Nils Jacobsen
VP Overseas Diving

    Presidents Waves

    The Board of Directors had our first meeting and approved the volunteers to the Board, lucky for us everybody that served last year agreed to continue to serve the Club this coming year. The following is our Board of Directors. Anybody interested in joining, please reach out as several Board Members would appreciate some help and would enjoy teaching others about the club.

     President  Chris Harham
     VP of Programs  Rick Dayan
     VP of Overseas Diving  Nils Jacobsen
     VP of Local Diving  Ryan Goheen
     VP of Social Events  Lureen Ferretti
     Secretary  Amy Wellman
     Treasurer  Ronnie Farr
     Hospitality  Clare Anthon
     Photo Gallery Coordinator
     Julie Manhold
     Social Media Coordinator
     Laura Moran
     Newsletter & Website  Roger Cooper
     Education Coordinator  Howard Ratsch
     Historian  Robert Shearer

    The club has been growing at a faster rate than since I joined the club, please come to meetings and help our club grow.

    Local diving is continuing this winter, so if you are brave enough to dive in “cold” water come join us. Please keep an eye on upcoming dives and join in if you are inclined. It is always a lot of fun catching up on the boat and having lunch afterward with friends.

    Happy diving,
    Chris Hardham


    Hospitality Hut

    Greetings From The Hospitality Hut,

    At the January general meeting of the USA Dive Club, one first time guest attended.

    Mike Bothwell was certified in 2001 in Madison WI.  He has logged 150 dives and is an Advanced Open Water diver.

    Be sure to greet and welcome our guests when you see that familiar "Hello My Name Is" tag.

    I encourage you to visit our home page  Please click on the calendar and keep up to date on all the diving and non-diving scheduled activities. You may also take a look at the photo gallery and take a peek at past events.

    I wish you all Happy Diving.

    Clare Anthon

    Hospitality Coordinator

    Local Diving

    Overseas Dive Trips

    Social Events

    • No upcoming mini-trips


    A Google search lead Mike Bothwell to the USA Dive Club.  He attended our January 2024 General Membership meeting, and by the end of the meeting, he had completed an online membership application and electronically transmitted his dues to the Treasurer.

    In 2001, Mike was certified in the chilly waters of Madison, Wisconsin.  He holds an Advanced Open Water certification and has approximately 150 dives.  He recently relocated to Florida from Denver, Colorado, and is looking forward to exploring Florida’s local reefs to sightsee and dive on a few wrecks.

    His most memorable dive was in Barbados, and Mike looks forward to diving in the Philippines sometime in the future.  Other than diving, Mike enjoys having dinner with friends.

    He has been renting equipment and would appreciate advice on where to buy gently used or reasonably priced new equipment.  Members may contact him by going to the USA website at  Sign into your account, click DIRECTORY, and enter Michael Bothwell in the Search box.  

    Let’s give Mike a warm USA Dive Club welcome when we see him on a dive or any other USA event.

    As always, we invite you to browse through our extensive Photo Gallery to take a look at our social and diving activities.

    Educational Blog

    A Beginner’s Guide to Wreck Diving

    This article represents the views of the author.  The article has not been fact checked by myself, the Board of Directors or any member of the USA Dive Club.

    Copyright Disclaimer under section 107 of the Copyright Act of 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, education and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing.

    Wreck diving is a specific type of scuba diving that requires added skill and provides a fulfilling experience for adventure seekers. Most wreck diving is done on shipwrecks, but it’s also common to explore sunken aircraft at the bottom of the sea floor. It’s become so popular among diving enthusiasts that retired ships have purposely been submerged to add to shipwrecks that can easily be accessed by beginners.

    But don’t be fooled—wreck diving with actual shipwrecks from many years ago and at much greater depths can be perilous even for certified scuba divers. Below, we describe the allure of wreck diving, common wrecks that divers explore, the different types of wreck diving, safety accessories that you’ll need to bring, and the potential dangers you need to consider before you embark on your first underwater expedition.

    For the complete article please use the following link.

    A Beginner's Guide to Wreck Diving (


    USA's Lobster Pot drawings Include CASH prizes, and a variety of PRIZES donated by Sponsors or Club Members.

    Funds from ticket donations help to support our many club activities. Congratulations to all our Lobster Pot participants. Be sure to visit our Local dive shops who support us and say 'Thanks'.

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