Sea Stories

Backbay

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I'm sure 1 way will be a crab stuffing on top since that is pretty much our favorite. Who knows about the rest. Hogfish is a very mild, delicate tasting fish.
Sounds really good. I remember my mom making flounder with a crab meat stuffing years ago - back then it was a "special" meal for a special occasion.
 

Backbay

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Eastern Stews
In 1980 I taught a semi private class of 3 Eastern Stewardesses. Now I'm an advocate of booties and fins that use straps. One of these ladies just had to use snorkeling fins where the toes can be exposed. When we went for their open water dives, we had just finished our skills part and started on a little tour. I was leading, when all of a sudden the one with the snorkeling fins passes me on the left, swimming upside down. I signal her "whats up" and she points behind her. I glance back and find several trigger fish in a line following her. They had been picking at her pink, polished toe nails. Trigger fish have pretty sharp "beaks" for picking at coral. When we got back to shore an ample amount of nail polish remover fixed the problem, so the second dive went smoothly. They had planned a diving trip to Cozumel, Mexico and said if I paid my airfare, I could stay with them. Being married, I had to decline the offer.
Great story, you and Medtran49 should write a book on your diving adventures coupled with your culinary delights!
 

rascal

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One Xmas while renting a house at takamatua, we decided to get some flounders, about 5 of us in 4 to 6 inches water with torches and spears. There was alcohol involved, dead lucky no one got stabbed. Never caught one. Great night though, funny as.

Russ
 

CraigC

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Salvage
When I returned from working in the Gulf of Mexico (commercial oil industry) out of Harvey, LA, I hooked up with a Salvage company that was going after $17,000,000.00 worth of copper ingots from a sunken Liberty ship off of Titusville, FL. in 250' of water. The ship was called the "Elizabeth Massey". Except for myself the rest of the dive personnel were ex navy including one ex seal. I was initially hired as a recompression chamber operator. Though we used premixed 80/20 heliox, we had to build our own umbilicals and supply/dive operations panel. The operation was surface supplied with two dive teams consisting of a tender and diver, controlled by a dive supervisor. The idea was to load a decent platform with precoiled umbilical for two divers. one diver to explore the wreck while the other diver acted as a tender from the platform. A cable from one of the surface ship's cranes lowered the cable with heavy weights to the bottom and the platform was to operate as an "elevator" to be lowered and raised on the first cable by another of the ship's cranes. The first two days the current was ripping and diving was out of the question. The third day was dead calm. I was up for the dive with another guy named Windy. We started our decent on the platform. Now the control panel operator is supposed to keep gas flow 10' below the divers but for some reason that wasn't happening for me. Each umbilical has a pneumofathometer hose that is positioned at the divers chest and is connected to a pneumogage at the surface on the control panel. I had to go on my bail out bottle a couple time until the operator finally caught up with the depth.

The platform was position next to the wreck. About 100' of umbilical was coiled inside the platform which I cut the securing ties and off goes Windy to check out the wreck. Several large grouper had come around to check us out, including one massive Warsaw. After Windy returned to the platform I started reeling in the umbilical for the trip topside. That Warsaw grouper started messing with Windy, who kept pushing it away. I guess it got irritated as it decided to lay it's head on Windy's shoulder. Windy finally punched it on the side of the head. It took off and the wash from it's tail spun Windy around. We were both using KMB-18A masks and his got knocked sideways. After he got squared away we started our ascent. We do what are called Sur-Ds. This is where we switch to pure O2 at our 50' deco stop which is completed, then we do part of our 40' stop, still on O2, then we are brought to the surface and returned to 40' in the recompression chamber on O2. They have 5 minutes to bring you up from 40' and back down to 40' in the chamber. Well the hydraulics stopped working on the crane operating the platform so we had to complete our deco in water. We got out of the platform, letting the topside tenders pull all the umbilical slack up, then clipped onto the main cable for the trip topside, finishing our 40', 30', 20' and 10' stops. once back on the ship, Windy described the wreck, which turned out to be a tanker. Upon further research, which should have been done before hand, it was discovered that there was never a Liberty ship named the Elizabeth Massey. The captain had snockered the rich Texan who funded this operation.

If you want to look at a Warsaw grouper, google 403' Warsaw grouper. You'll also see the idiots that killed it for no reason. I hate trophy hunters.
 
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Backbay

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CraigC - what a story, very interesting. Question: Do you know what's the estimated age of a 403 pound grouper and would the flesh be edible or full of toxins / mercury from a long life?
 

CraigC

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CraigC - what a story, very interesting. Question: Do you know what's the estimated age of a 403 pound grouper and would the flesh be edible or full of toxins / mercury from a long life?
I have no idea of what the age might be. As far as being edible, a pedatory fish that size will be full of worms and possibly other parasites. Ciguatera toxin is pretty much a given in a fish that size. I think mercury is mainly a freshwater concern.
 
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