Today’s interview is with Daniel Semrad of the Oregon Freediving Company! He is a world record holding spearfishing and freediving instructor that is also be an award winning teacher! He now runs the Oregon Freediving Company with his wife Talya who also holds spearfishing world records and is a competitive freediver representing South Africa! They train in some great conditions, we’re talking about dirty and 6-10 degree water! Listen in as we chat about spearfishing in Oregon, running a freediving shop and teaching students, hunting techniques, exercises and dry training to benefit your diving and a whole lot more. Dan is an awesome guy and a great diver, let us know what you think of this episode!
04:03 Hello and welcome Daniel Semrad! Tell us about the freediving/spearfishing community in Oregon
06:08 You’re a freedive instructor, how did you get there?
07:47 You won the Excite Award from MIT for being an exciting teacher
10:30 Water conditions in Oregon
11:38 What suit do you wear in your 6-10 degree water?
13:23 You probably spend a lot of time in the pool with conditions like that. How do you run your courses?
15:14 Buddy protocols in dirty water, what are you teaching your students?
17:56 What role do static exercises play in spearfishing?
19:25 When you feel you need to speed up, slow down. How did this become a reality to you?
22:22 My Octopus Teacher – has that impacted the amount of your customers?
24:09 Talya Davidoff is your wife, she is an accomplished spearo (3x world records) and competitive freediver too
25:10 Tell us about your records
28:38 What does your spearfishing consist of these days?
30:08 Walk us through a great day spearfishing for you
32:22 Purple urchins, are they bad over there?
33:48 Are they good eating?
34:50 Fisheries management
37:16 Hunting in Oregon: what species and how do you hunt them?
39:42 What are the telltale signs of the species you look for? Type of rock, seaweed, coral or animals.
42:17 You are covering a lot of ground looking for fish
43:03 I don’t like statics or aspetto spearfishing: hunting in Hawaii and Alaska
45:58 Gear: what do you use? You mentioned using a pole spear
47:19 Do you guys like smoking fish up there?
49:20 Scary stuff: have you had any close calls?
52:08 Spearfishing off a kayak: lessons learned from bad situations
55:22 What obstacles did you find in your spearfishing?
56:46 The delicate balance of doing freediving/spearfishing as a job, how do you balance it?
01:01:04 Understanding weather conditions and making predictions: how to predict visibility
01:03:45 Have you kept a dive log for spearfishing?
01:04:53 You have some back health issues? What do you do in the gym?
01:06:44 What cross training has been relevant for spearfishing and freediving?
01:08:30 Dry training can be hard to maintain, have you found the same?
01:09:22 Training resources for dry training
01:10:35 What yoga do you do?
01:11:34 Hate for spearfishing: what criticisms have you got for spearfishing and how do you respond?
01:13:39 Spearfishing on scuba vs freediving
01:14:44 Funny stuff
01:16:38 What’s in your dive bag? Wetsuit, gloves, fins, dive computer, weights, speargun and pole spear, shooting line, buoys/floats and lines, etc.
01:24:08 Do you teach spearo etiquette?
01:25:19 Spearo Q&A
Single best spearfishing tip: slow down!
What does the spearfishing experience mean to you? Hit the reset button
Who’s been the most influential people in your community? My local community
Where in the world would you like to go spearfishing? South Africa and Australia
01:27:30 Where can people find you and where is your shop?
01:29:23 Are you running courses again?
01:30:15 Outro and last notes that Daniel didn’t mention
Today’s interview is with Lyndsay Lyon from Ocean Guardian, originally and probably better known as Shark Shield! They make a range of products that are designed to make ocean activities safer and to decrease the amount of shark attacks on humans. It works by creating an electrical field that surrounds the diver or surfer that causes a distinct and noticeable reaction in certain types of sharks (namely the ones we humans have trouble with, Great White, Bull Shark, Tiger Shark) and causes them to turn away. Now, making a product that aims to stop shark attacks is a big claim and needs to be backed up by solid evidence and rigorous testing. We had a ton of questions from our community asking the questions that everyone wants to know: Will this stop a Great White from biting me? How close do the sharks need to get for these products to work? Can I trust my life to this?
If you are wondering at all about any of these questions, have a listen to this episode and it will answer all these and more! In the links below are several videos of these products being tested and you can see for yourself just how effective they are.
05:00 Hello Lyndsay! Where did the name change come from?
06:42 How did you get involved with Terra Australis and Andre Rerekura?
07:50 Terra Australis did a test with the surf board product
09:00 Tell us about how sharks sense the world and how Ocean Guardian affects sharks
10:47 Do they see in colour?
12:12 What scientific studies have been done? Many marine animals use electrical fields
15:14 What is the effective range?
17:44 What is the shark’s physiological reaction to the electrical field?
18:35 Has anyone been bitten while wearing one? What guarantee is there?
21:15 National Geographic has a good video on this with Chris Hemsworth
23:15 Use this as a risk mitigation strategy
24:07 What species are they most effective on? Only 3 main sharks that are a real concern to humans, Great Whites, Bull and Tiger sharks
25:41 Oceanic White Tips and Reef sharks and Mako’s, are they effective against them?
27:04 Installing the device into your fins
28:33 Have you thought about partnering with fin companies? Why a fin isn’t the best option
31:00 Handheld device for spearos
32:14 Problems with the first handheld Sharkshield
33:53 We are in a very small industry
37:06 Version 2.0 of the eSPEAR
38:15 Surfers are the highest risk
38:45 Bubbles also scare sharks
39:24 Shark barrier to replace shark nets
39:56 Does this interfere with other animals?
41:01 Government perspective on drum lines and shark nets
43:00 WA government actually gives you money to buy shark deterrents
43:58 Shark Eyes
46:20 Is there a maximum size shark it will work on?
Image by @sharkyaerials – The Ampullae of Lorenzini
48:00 Does 1 diver wearing this device put the others at a higher risk?
50:26 Hanging the device on your float or stringer
51:32 What are the long term effects on humans at depth?
53:21 Sharks seem to be more aggressive on the surface
54:52 I see more sharks with my shield on than without
56:40 The inverse square law and how far the field can be detected
57:39 Sharks can only sense electrical fields about 50cm away
01:00: Does the device emit a vibration?
01:00:55 Can these devices aggravate the sharks more?
01:02:46 Practicalities of using this in kelp or on coral reefs
01:04:44 Floating the device
01:06:45 How has Covid affected your business?
01:08:33 Adding an interchangeable battery
01:09:47 Shock protection?
01:11:23 Helping shark attack survivors get back into the water: The Bite Club on Facebook
01:15:13 How do you store the device?
01:16:00 How do you check the charge?
01:17:23 Auto-inflating vest for black out protection
01:18:30 What reduces the effectiveness?
01:20:09 How does it attach to you?
01:20:58 When will you have stock again and where can I buy them + servicing
01:25:08 What is the future for Ocean Guardian?
01:26:26 What’s your ultimate vision for Ocean Guardian?
How to upgrade your speargun and miss less fish! Today’s episode is with the Coatesman, Chris Coates! He and Shrek talk about accurizing, it is a word, the process of making your speargun accurate. They go through common speargun problems, shooting line, choice of brand, aiming techniques and much more. We rely heavily on our gear when spearfishing, this episode is all about making sure your hardware is working as best as it can. Roller guns vs traditional spearguns, barbs, bent shafts, mono vs dyneema and everything you need to know to upgrade your speargun, aim better and miss less fish!
Interested in roller guns? He has been the authority on roller’s for a while now and has released a great video series on Youtube and his website called Unrolling The Roller, it’s everything you need to know about roller guns!
What accuracy issues have you experienced? How did you solve them? Let us know in the comments!
00:14 Welcome to the show
05:15 Welcome back Chris Coatesman!
06:09 Spearfishing equipment cannot come back through the door
08:28 Every spearo has accuracy issues
09:53 The difference between weekend warriors and competitive spearos
11:02 First place to look, is your shaft straight?
12:15 I dive with at least 2 guns
14:20 Using the correct shaft
16:39 Why I use Rob Allen gear
19:08 Bro science vs engineering, practicality trumps the science
24:15 When buying a gun, make sure the shaft is aligned
25:11 I don’t make shafts and I don’t have handles
27:10 The downsides of homemade gear, don’t just make things cheaper, make them better
30:57 Next thing to look at is tuning your barb
33:20 There is a reason you work through troubleshooting in a specific order
35:30 Wishbones and shooting line, dyneema vs mono
44:42 Keep your guns the same
46:39 You can’t compare speargun prices to other sports. A speargun will last you 10 years if you do it right
48:27 Remove all doubt, have gear you can rely on. Carry spare parts
53:20 Fail fast and move on. Know where the issue is
Interview with Fin and Forage’s Andrew Miller and Charlie Robinton
Today’s episode is with Andrew Miller and Charlie Robinton from Fin and Forage! Spot burning is a highly contentious issue being faced more and more often as the sport of spearfishing grows. Picture this, you’ve spent the past 10 years roaming around your coastline and you’ve found a handful of really productive spots that almost always have good fish and is full of life. You have a friend that is new to spearfishing and is keen to get out to a spot to shoot some good fish, so you decide to take him along with you on your next trip. You both have a great time and shoot some great fish, take a few pictures and go home with some awesome stories. You then see that this friend has posted pictures of these awesome fish with clearly visible landmarks in the background, maybe he mentions the area in the post, or just simply tells his buddy who then tells his buddy, etc. You then go out to your secret spot expecting it to be vibrant and full of life as usual, but as you arrive you see other boats and other spearos already there and the previously full of life reef now has almost nothing left on it. This is what spot burning is, you share your secret spot with someone who then shares it with someone else and so on and in no time your secret gem of a spot is now void of life and you need to go searching again. Listen in for a great chat on this topic that is so close to so many spearos and fishermen alike. The ethics of keeping spots secret, how to find better spots without compromising and pissing off other spearos in the process and how to treat and manage the resource that is the ocean in your local area.
Message from Matt (@cutprofessor): “I found an app called photoroom. You can change the background of any photo in 30 seconds. Very handy.”
What do you think of spot burning? Have you been burnt or have you burnt a spot without realizing? Let us know in the comments or send a us a message if you’d like to stay anonymous!
00:12 Hello and welcome to the Noob Spearo Podcast!
06:05 Welcome Charlie and Andrew from Fine and Forage!
07:34 What is “spot burning”?
09:26 Some people care about keeping spots secret and some don’t
10:48 How much spearfishing is “too much” for an area?
12:27 Some species are more vulnerable to spearfishing than others
13:46 Noob spearos vs older spearos
16:36 The 30-30 agenda and MPA’s
19:44 What mistakes do noobs make?
21:35 How should you ask people for spots?
23:35 Metadata in photos
27:54 Physical community vs online community
30:59 Knowledge of good spots is a high barrier to entry
31:53 Find a local spearfishing shop and build a relationship with them.
35:30 Spearfishing is kind of like Pokemon
35:49 Do a charter trip
37:54 Be mindful of how you portray the spearfishing experience
41:37 There’s no licence to be able to dive, no basic skills explicitly required before starting – dangerous situations
43:02 Old Man Blue’s message
47:41 Good rules to not burn spots
50:02 How should you treat photos?
52:27 Treat people’s spots as a gift, not a right
54:03 Last thoughts and thank you to Charlie and Andrew
Today’s episode is with Andre Rerekura and Travis Corken (Samuel Rutherford couldn’t make it to the interview) about their new documentary: A Journey Beneath! A great film with some truly awesome visuals and an even better soundtrack, what’s more is that Shrek narrated parts of it! Amazing destinations, memorable fish and the theme of friendship – do yourself a favour and have a watch! Filmed over several years, it documents the travels of lifelong friends Andre and Travis as they go around the world to spearfish in awesome destinations, including an almost fatal incident that only strengthened their bond. A real treat of an experience for spearos, let us know what you thought of the film and let us know what you thought of this episode!
Today’s episode is with two ladies on the WA coast who have started a really cool initiative: Life’s Short, Stay Moist! Old Man Blue suggested Rachel and Larissa for the show and we are glad they did! These ladies are both great divers, have a passion for getting other women into the sea! We had a great time chatting about their own journey’s into spearfishing, using load assists, the talks they give at Adreno and the trips and events they run. If you’d like to find out more, have a listen to this interview and check out their Instagram and Facebook page. Thank you both for being on the show this week!