Snorkel Bob’s Reef Etiquette
by Snorkel Bob, Himself
NOTE: These directives are not meant as safety tips but rather as rules to live by in these difficult times of critical mass. See Snorkel Bob’s Snorkel Safety Tips for specific rules on water safety.
1) Don’t touch coral! Each polyp is a tiny critter.
2) Adjust your mask strap BEFORE going in. Be aware of your fins at all times.
3) Feeding marine life disrupts the natural balance.
4) Pick up trash & plastic. Sea turtles see plastic bags as jellyfish—try to eat.
5) Take monofilament line & net from beach & water. Turtles & others get tangled. If you see snagged mono, pull it out gently & put it in a trash can.
6) SUNSCREEN KILLS CORAL. Sunblock shirt & swim cap will protect upper-body & scalp. I, Snorkel Bob, got’um. Avoid sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate.
7) Don’t pursue sea turtles. Pursuing or touching a turtle may lead to citation, court, fine & custody.
8) Blow the whistle. Maiming fish, touching turtles or fishing in a preserve should be reported to the Division of Conservation & Resources Enforcement (Docare), Kona-327-4961, Hilo-974-6208.
9) Don’t buy coral or shells—most marine curious were taken live, killed for novelty. AVOID dried puffers & seahorses. You can also decline the shell lei given at most luaus—comments to luau management may help.
10) Love a reef. Regular snorkeling teaches reef health & fish count. Watch for algae bloom & pollution. Report deterioration to any Snorkel Bob’s in Hawaii or snorkelbob.com.
11) Aquarium collectors decimate our reefs.
12) Don’t eat reef fish. The ciguatera neurotoxin inhibits a pulmonary enzyme in humans, causing asphyxiation & itch. Have a nice day. I mean, really. Only the ogre under the bridge would see a little yellow tang, a wrasse or damsel & think of breadcrumbs & a light meunière sauce.
13) Assume stewardship. Spearguns are for deep water only. If you feel threatened, call 911. Nets are not allowed on protected reefs. Report all violations to the Division of Conservation & Resources Enforcement
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