Thursday, August 9, 2012

09/08/12 All creatures great and small

The one thing that tends to hit home whilst spending time at GVI Seychelles is the wide scale of bio-diversity at the survey sites. Personally my preference is for the tiny critters that frequent the reef.....but more about them later.
This week saw two very special visitors make an appearance for the staff and volunteers. On Tuesday Dr Dave Rowat from the Marine Conservation Society Seychelles came to provide a very informative presentation on Whale Sharks and the fascinating work his organisation carries out with regards to these magnificent creatures. We are entering into the Whale Shark season here in the Seychelles, and this was evidenced earlier in the week when two staff members and a volunteer had the pleasure to spend time diving with our second visitor - a 4m male Whale Shark.
Enough about the big stuff though, let's get back to the critters. A couple of interesting shrimps have been making an appearance in the last few weeks, although I suspect they have been here for some time. The most interesting of which was the Imperator Shrimp, which is a colourful little critter found on a number of the local sea cucumbers.
The Nudibranchs have also been out in force, especially the predatory  Gymnodoris ceylonica which is now well established in the sea grass beds feeding on the resident Sea Hares. All that's left to find now are the Harlequin shrimps - although there are some doubters regarding their presence....we will see.