Ocean News

Interview with a D’Arros Explorator

30th April 2014

Explorator profile
Name: Leanne Appoo
Age: 12
School: Independent School
Year: S1
Fin size: 35-36

Why did you enter the D’Arros Experience competition?
I thought it would be fun to do something new and enter a new place and experience new things.

Were you nervous about anything before coming to D’Arros?
I was a bit nervous about the plane journey. Ever since the Malaysia Airlines disaster, I haven’t had much confidence in planes.

Did your Mom give you any important advice before leaving?
She just told me to wear lots of sunscreen and have lots of fun.

The DÁrros Explorers heading out

The DÁrros Explorers heading out

What activity have you found most interesting so far and why?
I really liked the lagoon at St Joseph Attol. I found it interesting how the sharks and rays move around together without doing any damage to one another.

How many sharks and rays did you see?
We counted 20 rays, 13 sharks and 52 turtles too.

Have you learned anything new about sharks?
Abbie and I were snorkeling and a blacktip shark swam right past us. It didn’t even notice us. It just swam right past. It was kind of in it’s own world.

Were you scared of the shark?
The first time I saw it I was really frightened. I didn’t know what was going to happen.

Why were you scared?
My friends on Mahe´ are always talking about people going boogie boarding and then having their legs bitten off by sharks, but now I think they were just trying to scare me, from what I have seen, if you don’t bother sharks, they won’t bother you.

How do you think people will react when you tell people about your experiences with sharks on the island?
If I tell people at school they might not believe me, because they only know about sharks from movies and most movies discriminate against sharks, but they are actually really calm animals.

Our Explorator; Leanne Appoo

Our Explorator; Leanne Appoo

Were you afraid in the lagoon at all?
I got a fright when a ray swam over my foot.

What important lessons have you learned so far?
I learned not to step on corals because they are living things and are home to tiny fishes.

What would you still like to experience before you leave?
More sharks sightings. I would like to see different kinds of sharks. The sharks are my favourite.

What is your impression of the island so far?
This place is just amazing. Everything is so flat and so clean compared to Mahe´, which is really polluted. And the stars; I have never seen stars like this. It looks like someone is sprinkling glitter onto the island.

Are you missing your parents?
Nope. This is just like a really long sleepover.