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Fish Feeding Frenzy at Cod Hole

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Dive into the Code Hole dive site and the likelihood of you coming face-to-face with a massive potato cod will be around 99 percent. These giant monsters have made a home out of this dive site, located in the Great Barrier Reef.

Cod Hole has time and time again been cited as one of the top internationally renowned dive sites of the world. The dive site is located on the north end of the reef in Queensland, Australia near the ribbon reef number 10. Esteemed Australian shark and underwater experts Ron and Valerie Taylor put this place on the map twenty years ago and ever since, the potato cods have been regularly fed by tourist scuba divers.

Cod Hole is in Ribbon Reefs, which is a coral reef network of ten large reefs stretching almost 100 km near the border of Australia´s continental shelf. The reefs are full of lush coral gardens, multiple bommies and pinnacles and a vast mixture of different aquatic wildlife. Large pelagic fish often patrol the soft coral formations, walls and flats.

Divers at Cod Hole are at arms length from fat, friendly Potato Cod and Maori Wrasse who have grown plump with contempt after twenty years of generous feeding from open-handed divers. Cod hole is perfect for Kodak moments so definitely bring your underwater camera and have a wide-angle lens; the fish are massive, weighing up to 150kg! Other marine life includes anemones, whitetip reef sharks, giant blue lip clams, butterfly fish and feather starfish. If the wrasse and cod aren’t big enough for you, check

Feed me

out the reef during the Aussie winter. Dwarf Minke Whale are found around this part of the reef during the months of June and July. They are known to investigate snorkelers and hover about scuba divers, sometimes for hours.

The cods have brought fame to Cod Hole, however the never ending flow of tourist are starting to take their toll on the plump fish. Skin problems such as canker sores and other skin diseases are symptoms that local cod and wrasse share. The medical problems could be due to the poor food types they are fed combined with excessive handling by divers. Injuries noted to potato cod and other big fish at the Cod Hole are due to conflicts that arise between fish during feeding frenzies. In fact, the average number of cod sightings is decreasing annually. Operators are well aware of this and Divemasters tend to be the ones who feed the fish.

The area is fairly remote but easily accessed and companies carry out dive trips from the St. Douglass and Cairns ports. Here are a few dive operators for anyone interested in feeding the underwater giants:

Divethereef- 1 800 101 319

Divingcairns- 07 4041 7536


Map- divethereef

Cod Feeding Frenzy- Towtown Mafia

Cod- Richard Ling

Article by Michael Dawson from Diving Discoveries


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