Sunday, September 26, 2010

Week four brings some unusual behaviour

This week has brought us calm seas, blue sky and clear waters which has made the MCSS crew very happy.

Thursday 23 September the guys headed South and ended up at Capucin Rock, a favourite hang out for Whale Sharks. The team was having a great afternoon with 10 Whale Shark encounters and ideal conditions when they had some unexpected visitors. A large pod of Bottlenose Dolphins was spotted from the boat and soon after the same pod joined Ciara, Dave.S and clients while they were swimming with a Whale Shark close to the rocks, an amazing experience never to be forgotten.

The next day we headed south with, yet again, blue skies and calm seas. This proved for another productive afternoon with 5 new Sharks and 4 old, two of which were from 2009 and the other two were from 2005 and 2006!

The 25 September brought another unforgettable afternoon. The team had two boats heading south full of excited and eager clients. Mariska, Kate, Jenny and Joe were on Reef Diver with Gareth. We managed to find 7m male without aerial support just North of Point Lazare which only stayed on the surface for just enough time for Gareth to snap some ID shots. We then had a call over the Radio from Neil, our eyes in the sky, that he had a nice shark in a sheltered bay in shallow water which is always a treat.

Gareth was the first in and did well staying with the ram feeding shark(swimming fast through the water with mouth wide open).

The clients had a good swim with the 6.5m male, then to our amazement the shark pointed its head to the sky, arched its pectoral fins and started vertically feeding (hanging vertically in the water sucking water down into the mouth) .

This is a very uncommon behavior for whale sharks in the Seychelles and is very rarely observed. The water was so shallow in the bay that in place’s the sharks tale was almost touching the bottom! Another unforgettable afternoon in paradise.

Text and photos by Joe Daniels, one of the 2010 intern team.

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