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Monday, 30 March 2015

Best of both worlds

Sharks and turtles. The perfect combination. Like Morcombe and Wise, Eddie and Alec and Cider and Cheese, we got the perfect pairing on the first dive this morning. The cold front and ensuing high winds were due to hit us early morning but it actually held off till the afternoon although it was still lumpy at the surface which can be attested to by numerous people feeding the fish over the side of the boat any time they weren't underwater.

Rope off, chocks away!
With a strong NE wind, Captain Nat headed us South with Captain Nige deciding to do the Maze as there was a good chance to see the ladies in grey. And what do you know, it was a damn fine choice. As soon as we touched down, we had one, then another, then another until we had four sharks cruising past and checking us out.


Shark number one was notable as is had some fish line hooked up on it, and yes I would have tried to remove it if I could swim fast enough and get close enough to it, but after a few minutes it disappeared to be replaced by all of it's relatives.


And they were all more than happy enough to get up close and personal for the entire duration of the dive, which was find with us as we were more than happy just to sit and shark watch. Part way through, Jill did get my attention to see a massive loggerhead turtle cruise by which I decided to try and catch it up for a couple of shots. It was a big old boy and I haven't seen one of these for a few years so it was a welcome sight.



And I managed to remember to get a little bit of video as well.

video

After a brisk swim back to the wall, the party was in full swing with sharks weaving in and out of the cuts to check us out and smile for the camera.



And we had a fly by of another turtle towards the end as pointed out by Captain NIge, although I thing he was a bit pre-occupied by what the sharks were getting up to.

Captain Nige on the lookout as his turtle companion scuds past
To be honest, there was almost no point getting in the water to do a second dive as there wasn't anything that was going to top dive number one and we would have been more than happy to stay moored up and jump right back in with our fine finned friends. But given that people where chumming topside again, it was decided to motor on to somewhere a little flatter, in this case the Old House dive site.

It turned out to be ok, nothing particularly special, some nice swimthroughs. They did have some nice blennies though so that sort of made things interesting.




And a nice little red legged hermit made a brief scuttle past the camera for a shot as well.


Briefly followed by a juvenile lettuce leaf slug in a really awkward place, as is fairly typical for nudibranch, the inconsiderate little buggers.


The ride back to the dock was highly entertaining and I wish I had taken a picture as we had people hanging of both sides of the boat doing their best to empty their stomachs  which is always entertaining when it's someone else!