About us

PLANULA is owned and operated by Tim and Wandy Hochgrebe who also operate PLANULA B&B and Divers Retreat in Byron Bay – a magic place for a holiday or a quick break.

We both left biological science and Sydney behind in 2000 to create what we now call the “last oasis in Byron Bay” and love sharing our beautiful surrounds and making your stay in Byron Bay a enjoyable one.

PLANULA Video & Photo evolved from our passion for the underwater world. We started to capture the marine life in Byron Bay on photo and film in 1999 and haven’t stopped since. 1000s of dives and 100s of hours of film.

From early on we started helping others with their choice of underwater photographic and filming equipment. Which camera is best for me? What type of housing should I get? Can I try before I buy?

We are now official retailers for a many brands of cameras, housings and photo and video accessories. We have extensive experience with a whole range of underwater housings and we are able to answer many of your questions.

Both of us are also passionate marine biology enthusiasts and we can tell you quite a bit about the marine life that you might encounter should you decide to go for a dive or snorkel at Julian Rocks. We believe that people more appreciate what they see once they know what they are looking at – “the more you know, the more you see!”

If you have been looking for diving information on the internet, you would have stumbled over a website called underwater.com.au – a project we started in 2002 and a website that has become the most visited diving website in Australasia. We now have a team of helpers and the underwater australasia site is growing continuously.

Where does our name ‘Planula’ come from?

Planula is the name of the larval stage of anemones, jellyfish or coral following sexual reproduction.

The diagram shows a general schematic overview of the lifecycles of these animals.

The official dictionary description:

Planula – plural PLANULAE, free-swimming or crawling larval type common in many species of the phylum Cnidaria (e.g., jellyfish, corals, and sea anemones). The planula body is more or less cylindrical or egg-shaped and bears numerous cilia (tiny hairlike projections), which are used for locomotion. Planulae are produced by both of the basic body forms found in cnidarians–polyps, the stalklike, attached adult forms, and medusae, the bell-or umbrella-shaped, free-swimming adult forms.

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