Sharks, Mantas, Big Fish and Mandarins
Sharks, Mantas, Big Fish & Mandarins…
Our small group of guests arrived onto the Palau Siren ready for the diving ahead, which got underway the next morning with a check dive on the Haf Adai Wreck, a wreck of a small fishing boat in Malakal Harbor, the second dive was planned around Ulong so we pulled up anchor cruised over to the channel where we saw reef sharks, Napoleon wrasse and giant clams, whilst our afternoon and night dives at Sandy Channel brought yet more sharks but also nudibranchs, flatworms and a cuttlefish.
The second day of diving started at Siaes Corner where we hooked in for the first time and not only had the grey and whitetip reef sharks for company but again a juvenile eagle ray that seems to have found a home here. Palau Siren then moved towards the Ngemelis area, and the first dive here was a lucky one at German Channel one of the first things seen was a Manta at the cleaning station it stayed for a good 40 minutes. This night’s our dive at Big Drop off was another highlight so much to see …lobster, leaf fish, nudibranchs you name it was there!
Blue Corner, Dexter’s and Barnum’s Wall was the plan for this day, mild to medium currents so reef hooks were used at the corner, where the resident Napoleons always amaze and sometimes startle our guests, they really get close and with so many green and hawksbill turtles to see – each dive is a delight.
After a dive at Blue Holes with its entrance through the top of the reef, a few of our guests decided to do the optional land tour and visit the site of a major battle between the U.S. and Japan in the Pacific on the island of Peleliu. The rest went back to German Channel, no Manta this time but no current meant we could explore the hard coral garden behind the cleaning station at an easy pace. The weather in Palau can change a lot from day today unfortunately this time it was a rain filled one. Last dives for this day Turtle Cove’s dive with the resident big pregnant grey changes completely as a night dive where there are always lots of special small things to be found.
We opted to return to the action of Blue Corner the following morning. The sun is out and schools of jacks, barracuda and snappers looked amazing. The day rounded off with a night dive in German Channel with some of the group seeing a white tip reef shark hunting. The rain had returned which made for ok conditions at Jellyfish Lake and its millions of golden jellyfish, but after our snorkeling excursion the rain cleared and we cruised over to Siaes Tunnel for our last reef dive of the trip before heading into Malakal Harbour to dive the Iro Maru. Our last dive of the trip was at Sam’s Wall, where the fat mandarin fish mating were the highlight.