Sunday, July 17, 2011

Diving at Turks and Caicos

After spending a week lazing about in Ontario, we flew down to Turks and Caicos to check out what we heard was the best diving in the Caribbean.

This Eastern Kingbird (?) followed us there.  We saw it just a few days in Ontario just a few days prior

The island has been, on and off, the subject of parliamentary interest as various MPs proposed annexing the currently British territory with Canada.  Unfortunately for Canadians, the closest it came was a private member's bill in 1974 that was rejected.  On the resort a third of the staff seemed to be from Canada (Quebec, mostly) so there was no shortage of Canadian spirit.

Taking shelter by the pier

We spent most of our time at Club Med - an all-inclusive resort that is perfect for people who like trying new things.  We had included instruction of windsurfing, sailing, snorkel trips, and flying trapeze and could generally enjoy those out as much as our sunburnt skin could endure.

30 minutes after this photo was taken I had to be rescued by motorboat from drifting too far offshore. My memory of a year-old lesson in windsurfing had a big hole in the part, "where to position your feet"
The real reason we came this far (we didn't meet anyone else whose commute came even close to the 15 hours it took for us to get home) was for the diving.

Blue chromis

We were a bit disappointed with shark sightings.  This is the closest we came, just a silhouette of a Caribbean reef shark disappearing into the blue 

French angelfish with porcupinefish
Spiny squirrelfish

Four of a kind (jacks)


Dinner...I mean, spiny lobster

flamingo tongue (a type of gastropod (a type of snail)) on a fan coral

Hawksbill turtle
Meet and greet

Four-eyed butterfly fish


flamingo tongue
And for a video:

After speaking with other divers, we concluded that it would've been better to choose a different dive operator who could take us to the lesser dived southern and western part of the islands.  The diving wasn't just wasn't great, and our hopes were pretty high.  We had a great time with the other guests as well, most of whom were activity-minded like us.


Garden Lily said...

Tim - What wonderful photos. The turtle closeup is breathtaking, and I found the "four of a kind" photo amusing.

I stopped by your blog today with an alterior motive. As an aquarium enthusiast, how would you advise me - my little tank has recently become overrun with snails. They are small ramshorn and another common pond snail, which came originally with some plants I purchased. Although they don't seem to be doing any harm, it is getting unsightly to have so many snails everywhere. I'm fooling myself to think someone would want some of them, right? A quick search tells me this is considered a "common problem" in aquariums...


Tim said...

Hi Lily, thanks for stopping by. Some aquarium shops may buy them for credit, or you may try posting on Kijiji. If I still had tanks, I'd take them off your hands--The Ramshorn snails I've tried keeping always had their shells slowly dissolve away. For the pond variety, you could try just manually removing them every day until you see no more, unless you have a lot of hiding places. Snails generally aren't bad though...they feed on the extra food you have in your tank, reducing food rot, and help break down fish poop. If your tank is planted, the plants will appreciate that (unless the snails are feeding on the plants). Let me know how it works out! (how are your leaf insects, btw?)