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November 9th 2013

07 Nov 2013 ="post-tag" > Written by  ="post-tag" >

Cobweb cleaning brainstorming retail shop opening season
big-blue-shopAs I mentioned a few days ago, this is the time of year when we take advantage of it not being as crazily busy as the rest of the year, so we can do a bit of spring cleaning. The first of our five boats has gone to Chumphon for it's annual facelift.. actually waverunner is having a little more than just a splash of paint. But other stuff is going on too. We're having all our tanks visually and hydrostatically tested to make sure they're in good working order. James and Ian at Big Blue Tech are servicing all our regulators and tank valves for the same reason. We did a full stock take a couple of days ago to see what we might need to replace to keep our fins, wetsuits, masks and weightbelts in tip top condition, and our Divemaster trainee (DMT) mentors are looking over all our training materials with a fine toothe comb to see what needs tweaking, so we can offer the most effective dive professional training possible. But the biggest thing that's about to happen will be the highly anticipated opening of our new retail shop. We'll be selling all sorts of dive equipment, and have our own range of Big Blue branded clothing, such as bikinis, board shorts, t-shirts, singlets and speedos.. ok no speedos, just mankinis. We will also be selling some exciting underwater photography equipment, and the list of what else is growing by the day. All you need to do is watch this space as there will be a dedicated blog post to mark the official opening... soon! This all equates to a diving resort that is constantly looking at itself in order to improve and evolve, so that we can offer you the best diving experience possible, by a looooong way.

Koh Tao animal clinic
koh-tao-animal-clinicVisitors to Thailand are often struck by the amount of stray dogs and cats wandering around, pretty much everywhere. Koh Tao is no different; some of them were born in the jungle off the main roads, whilst some were adopted by westerners who then abandoned them when they decided to move on- a sadly common occurance. A lot of the dogs suffer from, skin infections, fleas, or mange, and all are trying and stay alive by scavenging wherever they can. The koh Tao animal clinic was set up in 2002 on a temporary basis to try and do something about it. 11 years later it's still going strong, and now has a resident Thai vet, Dr Jae Intaraksa and a clinic assistant, Nai. The clinic has a number of aims. These are:

1- To establish a permanent vet clinic on the island of Koh Tao.
2- To introduce a neutering programme to bring the animal population under control.
3- To introduce a vaccination programme including mange and flea control to maintain a healthy animal population.
4- To introduce an education programme for visitors to the island to reduce casual feeding of the animals by tourists, and encourage support of a properly managed programme through the vet clinic.
5- To introduce an education programme for the islanders in good animal management.

They are working really hard to achieve these aims, and are making a lot of progress, but the clinic is funded solely by donations made by members of the public from all over the world. If you're in koh Tao, please consider making a donation, even if it's just the cost of a beer. It all adds up. If you are a vet spending some time travelling and find your way to Koh Tao, you may be able to offer your services to the clinic, but you'll need to have at least two years experience and be able to provide two references (one from your current employer). You'll also need to present a copy of your graduation certificate. If you really want to donate money and get something in return, you can pop into the clinic monday to friday and buy one of their snazzy t-shirts- you can guarantee that no-one back home will be wearing the same clothes as you! All money donated goes directly to the upkeep of the clinic and helps pays for medication, which is notoriously expensive. They are based opposite the Save Koh Tao office in Mae Hadd, easy to find if you ask someone. For more information, visit their website by clicking here.


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