08 January 2010

Shark Alley

Our snorkel at Shark Alley today was a chilly but eventful one. There were five snorkelers in all: Eva and Annemarie, the two lecturers who just joined the SFS team, Annemarie's husband, Pepe, Brett, and me.

Patch Reef at Shark Alley

Just a few minutes after we got into the water, a porcupine fish swam past us. Usually they're really timid, but this one got fairly close to us and didn't seem skittish at all. A few minutes later we saw a reef shark that was about average length, but really wide around the middle. For a second, I questioned whether it was actually a bull shark, but we all talked about it when we got back onto the boat, and the consensus was that it was just a little chubby.

Chubby Reef Shark

You can tell that I was carrying the camera today instead of Brett, because when I have it we come away with very few photos. I just get so focused on looking at what's around me that I forget to actually take pictures. The above photo of the reef shark swimming away from us was actually taken by Brett when he realized that I was busy watching the shark and letting this awesome photo op slip away in the meantime, and took the camera back to get a shot at the last possible second.

Probably the most exciting part of the snorkel was the number of eagle rays we saw, and how close they were to us! One of them actually swam directly underneath me, about 4 feet down. (I did actually take the pictures below.)

Beautiful Eagle Ray

Brett checking out a cute little sting ray... can you find it?

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