It is mating season for the Cuttlefish in the Netherlands. When the water temperature reaches 12 degrees Celsius the Cuttlefish immigrate from the North Sea to the Oosterschelde (and elsewhere along the Dutch coast) to shallower water. They are looking for the right place to mate and place their eggs. Those eggs will hatch around 8 weeks later. The older animals will die from exhaustion after the mating process. During summertime evidence of this can be found all over the beaches of Holland where you will find the remains (the internal shell) of the squid.
Most divers will know about the mussel, probably most of you will have tasted one also. In the Netherlands we love our mussels so much we even have special mussel farms. These farms produce the so called Blue Mussel which is even exported worldwide. A funny story about a friend of mine. He is just crazy about mussels and one time he was in a restaurant in Spain and saw on a menu a Spanish recipe with mussels. When he left the restaurant the door to the kitchen was open where he saw boxes where the mussel had been transported in. The mussel came from back home, the Dutch Blue Mussel. How about that traditional dish ;) This was the first time in my life I dived at a mussel farm and I’m definitely going to visit this place more often. It was one beautiful dive I made.
I had great plans this weekend for some new scuba diving stories. Like going in search for some cuttlefish and visiting a mussel culture. All though all my plans where messed up by the Dutch weather. It has been raining, raining, and a bit more raining for the past few days. If it just had been the rain it wouldn’t have been that bad. Despite the fact I hate to change into my wetsuit in the rain. The biggest spoiler was the wind this weekend. It has been blowing with storm force creating bigger waves which in turn created loads of sediment, which means visibility dropped to zero.
Some of you don’t understand why someone willingly wants to dive in cold waters like those in Holland. Others living in the same climate as me understand you will dive anywhere, just to get your dose of weekly scuba rush. Besides it’s not that I have any choice, except moving to the Dutch Caribbean. All though scuba diving in the Netherlands is definitely not the same as diving in Red or Caribbean Sea, it has it’s own beauty and adventure!
After waiting for three weeks, I just got the liberating answer from my diving buddy. We are going to be Suunto Staffers this year. This means we will get a Suunto know-how training. We will get the change to dive with the newest Suunto products, test all the equipment and share our experiences through social media.
No it’s not a late April fool joke. The Dutch name of this fish is really ‘Snotolf’. Perhaps better known as a Lumpsucker fish (Cyclopterus lumpus). During all my dives in Holland I never had the luck to encounter one. However this time other divers warned us of a Lumpsucker fish holding up at an artificial reef at the dive site ‘Den Osse, Kerkweg’. This was our last change this year for a close encounter. So we went in search for the Snotolf.