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Friday, 11th September 2015


Tuesday, 17th June 2014


USS West Mahomet in dazzle camouflage, 1918 - photo courtesy of wikipedia  

  • DAZZLE!USS West Mahomet in dazzle camouflage, 1918 - photo courtesy of wikipedia
  • DAZZLE!HMS Argus displaying a coat of dazzle camouflage in 1918 - photo courtesy of Wikipedia

We always think camouflage is for hiding and concealing things.  Animals use it in the wild to blend into their habitats so that predators can't spot them, hunters (humans and animals alike) wear it so that their targets cannot see them, and the army has a long tradition of including it as part of their uniform to prevent soldiers being seen in the battlefields.

But during WWI the Allies (Britain, France, and Russia) also used a completely different type of camouflage that was very easy to spot! They realised it was very difficult to disguise large fleets of their ships out at sea. No matter what colours they used, the ships were always easily sighted. Starting with Britain, the Allies decided to paint black and white patterns all over their ships instead! These patterns drew attention to their ships, because the colours were so bold and the straight lines used were so obvious. But these patterns covered the ships completely and made it difficult for enemy submarines to figure out how large the ship truly was, and where exactly to target enemy fire at the ships!

This camouflage was not used to hide these ships, it was used to confuse the enemy! This type of camouflage became known as "Dazzle" camouflage.

Do you know any quirky facts like this about WWI?

Do you think the Dazzle camouflage was successful?

Why don't we use Dazzle camouflage today?

What do you think of Dazzle camouflage?

Answer my questions and comment on the blog below!

Comments (2)

It was amazing how smooth some rocks are . I never knew how expensive & heavy gold was .
thanks for the jade stones .

from Lucy & Liana

By: Lucy & Liana on Wednesday, 25th June 2014 @ 12:02:39

It's great to see that you all enjoyed reading the blog. Come back to the museum soon, it's awesome having the Arrowtown school kids visit the museum!

By: Amy Taylor on Wednesday, 25th June 2014 @ 12:19:13