Monday, March 14, 2016

One rock in the holds a unique diversity of life underwater, Roca Partida

--March 12, 2016
    Hi All!
    Pacific Ocean, still Mexican waters, one rock in the middle of it holds a unique diversity of
life underwater, Roca Partida.
At the horizon we only see a hint of Socorro Island, and behind it a gorgeous sunrise.
The swells breaking into the rock due to wind scares the boobies making them all fly over the
rock to land once again on the same spot!
Every one is excited about Roca this morning, thinking positive thoughts! After only 5 minutes zodiac ride a bunch of dolphins leading the way confirm the thoughts! Current this morning is coming from South, Dolphins want to play on the North area! Our descent to the first dive was accompanied by 17 dolphins that made us swim away from the rock, leading the way and keeping the same short distance in front of us all the time, enough distance to do the dolphin swim and interact with them for a couple minutes! Then the slowly return to the rock once again, ledges at 12m/40ft, 15m/50ft, 18m/60, 24m/80ft, 27m/90ft were so occupied by lots of white tip reef sharks plus many more swimming around the rock, shelter offered by the rock is well appreciated by cotton mouth jacks making and constantly changing formations, the imaginary line Pacific creole fish create tells their safe limits that a chevron manta can only surpass chased by a Mobula Ray. A big body of blue water where this two pelagic are the only subjects, no one fish can go that far other than yellow fin tunas. Today we did 3 dives at Roca, the south east side of it had fantastic action with lots of Galapagos sharks, in numbers ranging from 30 to 50 individuals coming up to our depth 24m/80ft, silver tip sharks also gained our attention swimming with no effort at all into current, south west side of the rock from 30m/100ft of water to 15m/50ft was so crowded by a huge school of skip Jacks making us spin around in  our same point while this world of fish came closer and closer to us to the point up and down, left and right, front and behind fish all over, we can almost grab one, touch them, of course always chased by silky sharks, looking up towards the surface we still see the white color contrasts the swells breaking into the rocks on the surface! As fish came in to area they left as well, we find ourselves in mid water 18m/60ft now, no more even one single fish around us, this place looks so empty! Just seconds ago life was abundant! Out of the blue another curious visitor comes into our area to check us out, a baby turtle, it took a few minutes to feel comfortable around us to then come closer made a few circles around, so close we even made eye to eye contact, it made us feel for a second how vulnerable it is, so close we saw its front fins pushing its little body throughout the water, then slowly swam away! There are many things going on down here, we don't want to ascend for our surface interval! Nitrox 29 and Water temp still 24C/75F made us stay longer to enjoy hammerheads too, by the rock checking it out more detailed lots of lobsters growing old, yellow and red tail trigger fish, green moray eels, black jacks, rainbow runners, everything going so smooth then suddenly a pack of Yellow fin Tunas shut straight down making a school of hammerheads break apart, a behavior we have witnessed other times as well!!!!Hope you enjoy reading as much as we enjoy diving! 

Dive Inst
Daniel Zapata

Solmar V.

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