Georgina started diving in 1990 despite being a claustrophobe with an abject fear of being trapped underwater. It was a friend's idea and turned out to be definite proof that peer pressure isn't always a bad thing. She fell in love with the marine world the first time she saw a False Bay reef underwater and since then has become increasingly fascinated by marine life, and primarily Cape Peninsula marine life.
Her underwater terrors led her to gain a whole bunch of qualifications in a short space of time so she did her NAUI Openwater One and followed it with NAUI Advanced in Search & Recovery and Rescue and then the Class IV Scientific Diver course. Some years later, considerably less stressed underwater, she did the PADI Rescue course and then the CMAS Advanced Nitrox course and is currently busy with the Class IV Diving Supervisor's course, since apparently it will come in handy.
She has a Business Science degree in Economics from UCT, as well a B. Sc. (Hons) in Biochemistry. Neither of these have been particularly useful in her current (and probably lasting) occupation of writing marine guides but at least both have equipped her with the valuable skill of working out where to find information.
Around 2003 she found herself without employment and decided to embark on writing a field guide that would help local Cape divers identify the animals they saw underwater. It was published at the end of 2008. Although it involved five years of research and diving, she still feels she has an enormous amount to learn about the biodiversity of the Cape waters.
Along the way she has managed to find a couple of unidentified species and to start taking underwater photographs. The pictures are mostly of invertebrates, because they tend to either stay in one position or else to move slowly enough so as not to be too challenging to capture on film. Also, she has become convinced that motivated and informed recreational divers could significantly add to the sum total of scientific knowledge regarding the underwater world. She is generating a wikipedia site on Cape Peninsula diving so that underwater observations of unusual animals or behaviours can easily be discussed, searched for and shared. She has also started work on an expanded field guide which will cover shore-based life and rock pools as well.
Areas of interest and specialised knowledge:
Areas dived within South Africa:
Paternoster, Cape Town (Robben Island to Kalk Bay), Hermanus, Gansbaai, Knysna Lagoon and Heads, Plettenberg Bay, Port Elizabeth, Wild Coast north of Port St. Johns, Protea Banks, Aliwal Shoal, and Sodwana Bay.
Inland: Blue Rock, Bass Lake and Miracle Waters.
Areas dived internationally
Mozambique (Ponta da Ouro, Ponta Mamoli and Gunjata Bay), Egypt (southern and northern Red Sea), Seychelles, Indonesia (Lembeh Straits, Raja Ampat and Komodo), Australia (Ningaloo Reef, Port Phillip Bay, Great Barrier Reef), New Zealand (Poor Knights Islands), Mexico (off the Yucatan Peninsula and cavern diving on the peninsula), Belize (barrier reef), Honduras (off Utila), Guatemala (Lake Atitlan), Cuba and Bermuda.
Spiby, G and Jones G. 2008. Raja Ampat. December. Getaway Magazine
Jones, G. 2008. Field Guide to the Marine Animals of the Cape Peninsula, Southern Underwater Research Group Press
Jones, G. and Albert, S. 2004. Humpbacks in Tofo. April. Divestyle Magazine
Jones, G and Albert, S. 2004. Sea spiders. April. Divestyle Magazine
Monthly contributor to Full Circle magazine, Southern Peninsula
Regural contributor to NSRI magazine
Lanterbecq, D., Hempson, T., Griffiths C. & I. Eeckhaut. 2008. Myzostoma fuscomaculatum (Myzostomida), a new myzostome species from False Bay, South Africa. Hydrobiologia.
d'Udekem d'Acoz, C. 2007. New records of Atlantic Hippolyte, with the description of two new species, and a key to all Atlantic Mediterranean species. 29(1). Zoosystema.
Hempson, T. 2006. Symbionts of comatulid crinoids in False Bay. University of Cape Town.
Zsilavecz, G 2007. Nudibranchs of the Cape Peninsula and False Bay. Southern Underwater Research Group Press
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