We are back once again in our old research station rooms, bordered by champignons and black tips cruising in the shallows – home sweet home. The school kids left this morning in rough seas for Assumption and the sounds of the island have returned to full volume. The southeast wind brushes through the big broad-leafed trees and needle thick casuarinas, and the resident rail is investigating the mess area for food options.
The tides are playing games with us again… they are neap tides and are at their minimum range. This happens when the moon is in the first and third quarter and the Sun’s forces partially cancel those of the moon. The low tides slow down our work considerably as it prevents our big boat from crossing over the reef to reach the dive sites.
We spent the evening photographing the black tips’ fins in the shallows until it was too dark to shoot, and Dan took advantage of the golden evening light on the champignons, which were exposed down to their base with the low tide, to get some topside footage.
I feel we were lucky to have had the calm, flat waters for so long. We were spoiled, and even though the southeast is not blowing a storm it would make conditions for many shots better if the stillness returned. Perhaps the wind will be kind and we may get another lull before the monsoon is here to stay.