Say hello to today’s featured diver, Nicholas Curzon. Nicholas is the c0-founder of Friends For Sharks, an initiative which aims to raise the plight of sharks and rays around the world and one which The Scuba News is a proud sponsor of.
Full Name: Nicholas Curzon
Live In: Currently traveling around the World though ‘home’ would be Southern England
Working For: Friends for Sharks
Diver Qualifications: PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor
When and where did you start diving?
1995, I completed the theory and confined water dives in a small pool in a back garden somewhere in South England and finished the course on a family holiday in Turtle Bay, Kenya.
Why did you start diving?
I’ve always loved water and everything in it. At the age of 6 I decided I’d like to be a Marine Biologist so when I was old enough, learning to scuba dive seemed a sensible and useful (and of course fun!) thing to do.
What made you choose to become a dive professional? (if applicable)
3 Years working in offices not related to Marine Biology (despite obtaining a degree in the subject) resulted in a certain amount of itchy feet/feeling hemmed in, so I quit and then wondered what to do. Almost exactly 10 years after leaving school with the answer to the obligatory question of what you’ll be doing in 10 years time of: “Hopefully swimming about on coral reefs being paid to look at fish, but more likely wading around in puddles looking at bacteria” I decided to become a Scuba Instructor and make the dream a reality.
Which is your favourite dive site and why?
Sooo many but then I was spoilt for choice working in Sharm… For atmosphere: Thistlegorm. For always coming up with new surprises and giving me some very memorable dives despite being so ‘simple’: the Red Sea Diving College’s house reef. For always giving me a good dive, always being beautiful (particularly the sea fans) and being a perfect mix of wall drift and bottom drift: Ras Umm Sid.
What has been the most memorable dive of your life and why?
Either dive number 12ish – Giant Manta Ray cruising overhead against a very strong drift in the Maldives, or the fish ID dive of teaching my sister her Advanced Open Water on Thomas Reef, Tiran – turning around to see a Tiger Shark swimming by.
If you would come back as a marine life form in your next life, what would that be?
Having worked for a number of months on a White Shark cage diving boat in False Bay, the mischievous part of me would love to come back as a cheeky Great White that would always breech randomly where no one has a camera pointed, or snipping the line in front of a decoy being towed. Alternatively I’d also enjoy being a seal or sealion. Those guys are so agile and graceful in the water and love to play.
Who is your dream dive buddy?
I already have mine (soppy, I know!) but as a back-up buddy, anyone who gets through their air 2 mins before me so I can always feel smug.
What dive locations are on your dream “bucket list” and why?
Anywhere with sharks because… well… sharks… Nudibranchs are also a favourite!
What is on your bedside table right now?
A lamp, my Kindle, a hippo (I’ve collected them since traveling to Kenya) and often either the tail or the nose of the giant cuddly shark that shares the bed.
What is your favourite piece of diving equipment and why?
My Apex TX-100 regs. Most of my kit is second/third/fourth and possibly fifth-hand, but they breath beautifully, have never given me any cause for concern and most importantly look cool!
If you were to launch a campaign to raise awareness on a specific issue that affects divers, the oceans or marine life, what issue would you target and why?
Well… Funny you should ask… Overall marine conservation is very important, but the threats faced by shark populations worldwide urgently need to be heard and that’s why my partner Kathryn and I set up Friends for Sharks not long ago and are embarking on a World Tour to do precisely that!
Where will you be in 10 years and what will you be doing?
Well considering how effective that was last time I answered it, could I suddenly have enough money to continue the Friends for Sharks work without needing to do any fundraising or worry about costs ever again please?
Learn more about Nicholas and Friends for Sharks at: http://www.friendsforsharks.com/ or watch the video below.