Log Date: Saturday, May 14, 2016
Entry By: Belize Aggressor IV Crew
Belize Aggressor IV
Water Temp: 82F
Vis: 100 ft;
Weather: Partly sunny. Winds around 10 kts. Increasing to 15-20 kts later in the week.
Crew: Captain Alex, First Mate John, Dive master William, Dive master Monique, Chef Jerry, Assistant Chef Carlos, Stewardess Elia
Sunday: Julies Jungle and Site X
Monday:Half Moon Cay Wall and Eagle Ray Wall
Tuesday: Chain Wall and Long Cay Ridge
Wednesday: East Cut and Long Cay Wall
Thursday:Painted Wall and Silver Caves
We started off another wonderful week of Belize diving with a morning at Julies Jungle. Julies has a great collection of coral heads cut through with canyons at the crest of the wall that fade into smaller coral heads up in the sandy shallows. On this beautiful sunny day, we had great visibility and there were several sightings of spotted eagle rays and green morays. For the afternoon, we shifted down South to a site off Hat Cay called Site X. While Site X has many different environments to explore, we spent most of the dives in the shallows playing with the numerous yellow-headed jaw fish and sail fin blennies that were making some very flashy displays.
Today we headed over to Half Moon Cay Wall, on the East side of Lighthouse Reef. The site boasts large sand flats in the shallows, where we found hermit crabs, garden eels, and stingrays. Over at the crest of the wall, there are numerous canyons and swim throughs, and our group had some wonderful encounters with a small group of Nassau groupers at the base of one canyon. For the afternoon, we made our way back across to Eagle Ray Wall, on the North tip of Long Cay. The site lived up to its name, with several beautiful eagle rays swimming along just off the wall. Aside from the big stuff, our group also found a few of the elusive scorpion fish and some very nice lettuce leaf sea slugs.
As the winds started to build, we got in a nice morning of diving over on the East side of Lighthouse on a site called Chain Wall. The big animals were out in force again; we had a group of four reef sharks and four eagle rays pass our divers while they were exploring the wall. Another highlight of the site was a massive loggerhead and several very friendly Nassau grouper. In the afternoon, we slipped over to Long Cay Ridge on the West side of Long Cay. During the first couple dives, a big green moray got nice and friendly with some of our divers, and then during the night dive we witnessed an incredible sight. An octopus jumped off the edge of the wall and did a free fall into the depths!
We started our day off with a visit to East Cut, where the reef sharks and groupers were feeling nice and friendly, and the visibility was beautiful. Our afternoon was spent over on the West side of Long Cay at Long Cay Wall, always a favorite. Over the three dives, we pretty much saw everything there is to see in Belize! We had a friendly reef shark, known as snowflake for the white spots on his head, eagle rays, and big green morays. Of course, the macro life was vibrant as well, one of our dive masters managed to pick out an elusive mantis shrimp along with the numerous yellow-headed jaw fish and roughead blennies.
For our last full day of diving, we spent the full day along the Western side of Long Cay. For the morning, we played around in the waters at Painted Wall. There, the abundance and diversity of small reef fishes and vibrant walls of healthy corals and numerous sponges made for a wonderful morning. Up the in shallows at the end of the second dive, we got a nice close encounter with a young hawks bill turtle. Over lunchtime we moved over to Silver Caves, a site known for its great little tunnel that takes you from the wall up into the reef. The two big highlights of the site were several very friendly green morays and a cute little brown seahorse.
As usual, we wrapped up our week at Sandy Slope on the West side of Turneffe Atoll. The sand and scattered coral heads makes it an excellent site to to enjoy some macro life. Several divers got lucky enough to come across a yellow-headed jaw fish carrying eggs in its mouth! Other highlights of the site include the numerous spotted morays and lobsters behind every other coral head.
Once again, we bid farewell to another group of new friends that we hope to see again soon. Thanks to all for a wonderful week!