Guest Excursions during May
Three species were recorded on our dolphin-spotting cruises for May : spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris), bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), and short- finned pilot whales (Globicephala macrorhynchus) – the highest number of individual short-finned pilot whale sightings this year.
The most frequently sighted species on our snorkel excursions was the blacktip reef shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus) followed by the hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata). On the dive excursions, the range of megafauna sightings included :
- Stingrays: marbled (Taeniura meyeni) and mangrove whiptail (Himantura granulata),
- Rays: manta (Manta alfredi) and spotted eagle (Aetobatus narinari),
- Nurse shark (Ginglymostoma cirratum) and whitetip reef shark (Triaenodon obesus),
- Napoleon wrasse (Cheilinus undulates) and bumphead parrotfish (Bolbometopon muricatum).
Fish Breeding Project
Throughout May we saw five spawns from our Maldivian clownfish (Amphiprion nigripes) and a further two batches from the Clark’s clownfish (Amphiprion clarkii). By the end of the month we had 234 Maldivian and 651 Clark’s juveniles here in our Fish Lab at Landaa Giraavaru.
On the 28 May, we released four Clark’s clownfish into the lagoon, along with two anemones at the Moon site. One week later, the fish were still doing fine and appeared happy in their new home.
Cath’s Blog – Chapter 2
Hello everyone. This is my second month here, working at the Marine Discovery Centre, and time is flying so fast!
I am witnessing new and amazing things every day, from sunsets to Spanish dancers (a species of Nudibranch). I encounter many unusual marine critters whilst I’m out monitoring the Reefscapers coral frames. We take photos of each coral frame every 6 months to check on their progress, so I have been spending several hours each day in the lagoon, collecting new photo ID data. This has given me plenty of time to encounter stingrays, sharks, moray eels and other underwater friends who come along to see what I’m up to.
Last week we welcomed five turtle hatchlings into our Head Start programme. We will nurture and care for the turtles until they grow to about 30cm long, when they will be released into the ocean. And just a few days ago, whilst we were out monitoring and placing new frames in the water, we encountered a pod of 10 Spinner dolphins. For the first time in my life I actually swam with dolphins! They were circling around one another and changing directions and diving so gracefully I could barely believe my eyes. After that, my suspicions were confirmed – this really is the best internship in the world!
Before she left, Cath compiled this fun video of her time here as an intern at Kuda Huraa. You can see that it’s not all work-work-work, and there are lots of laughs to be enjoyed along the way. 🙂 Thanks Cath, and wishing you every success in the future !
You can follow Cath’s future adventures here on YouTube.
Do you want to experience life as a marine biologist
here in the Maldives ?
Head over to our Employment page to read about the different ways you can work with us - full time, apprentice, intern or volunteer. And see more from our Interns and Volunteers in their very own words & photos as part of our Diary / Blog series.
One of our first interns, Dylan (from Singapore's Temasek Polytechnic) had an amazingly unique experience with us.
Firstly, he helped with the rescue of a stranded false killer whale 'Haita' (although she sadly did not survive rehabilitation).
And then he was invited to the “Marine Mammal Stranding Symposium” (February 2013), to present our work and findings to fellow marine biologists.
Dylan (Singapore) 2012
Glen worked with us in 2014, developing a shark population survey to study local populations of Blacktip Reef sharks using a variety of survey methods including underwater camera traps, and snorkel surveys.
Glen (UK) 2014
Frédéric was a PhD student and lecturer at the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, specialising in ecology and tropical marine biology.
During his time with us, Frédéric researched indigenous Echinoderms, and possibly discovered a previously undocumented new species of sea cucumber.
Frédéric (France) 2014
A very enjoyable part of my job is spreading awareness to the public, to promote better understanding and appreciation for the marine ecosystem. We recently organised a school excursion ... seeing these enthusiastic children learning about the environment brings me joy and hope.
My time here has been an amazing experience ... more than just swimming with the fishes and being surrounded by beautiful reefs!
Adrelia (Singapore) 2014
The care and rehabilitation of the turtles here is very satisfying work.
In just a short few weeks, I have seen Spinner Dolphins, Hawksbill Turtles, Black Tip Reef Sharks and of course lots of colourful and varied marine life ... a wonderful moment each time!
Mailis (Belgium) 2015
Every day since I have arrived has been an adventure!
I am witnessing new and amazing things every day, from sunsets to 'Spanish Dancers' ! It’s a wonderful experience as we share underwater marine life encounters, and I have actually lost count of how many sharks, dolphins and turtles I’ve encountered since I arrived ... and it’s magical every time.
Cath (UK) 2015
Winy and Hazel had a very busy and enjoyable time, working with our turtle care patients and the Reefscapers coral propagation programme.
They also helped with an important reef clean-up, and had a memorable day releasing baby turtle hatchlings into the ocean.
Winy & Hazel (Hong Kong) 2015
Taking time off work to travel all the way to the Maldives to care for sea turtles might seem a crazy idea to some; for me, however, it was the chance of a lifetime. This was the perfect opportunity to leave my office desk in the concrete jungle of Hong Kong and take part in something meaningful in a unique part of the world.
I have had a tremendous time, and have made friends with a lot of lovely people from around the world. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and would definitely like to come back some day to visit everyone… and the sea turtles too, of course!
Keith (Hong Kong) 2015
I had never seen a turtle this large before, which was a whole new experience for me in itself ... It took 6 people to get this amazing turtle out of the water and into the boat.
I have even started leading some of the snorkel safaris around nearby reefs, an incredibly rewarding experience to be sharing information and experiences with people. My favourite moments have often been on our dolphin cruises, the incredible spinner dolphins never cease to amaze me as they throw their bodies high above the water surface. That is certainly a sight I will never get tired of!
Sophie (UK) 2015
You can see some breathtaking marine life here in the Maldives, and every time I’m in the water I feel constantly in awe of my surroundings ... 2 mantas at a cleaning station swam through our dive group, getting extremely close!
These activities, along with the people I have met along the way have ... made the experience so enjoyable and memorable.
Emily (UK) 2016
Every day was a different adventure, with turtles to treat, corals to transplant, talks to give and dolphins to spot. It is always a thrill to (see) the juvenile Spinner dolphins, who stick very close to their mothers but are often the most acrobatic jumpers, putting the ‘spin’ in Spinner. Sometimes we were lucky to spot manta rays too.
I am very grateful to the Marine Savers team ... It has strengthened my desire to work in marine conservation and I hope to be back in the Maldives one day!
Roz (UK) 2016
The Marine Savers team is great fun to work with, and I couldn’t have asked for a better location to gain some experience in environmental conservation.
It was wonderful to be around so many people who share my passion for the underwater world, and I hope it’s not too long before I’m back beneath the waves in the Maldives!
Dhiya (Sri Lanka) 2016
Each morning I caught the local 8:15 ferry boat … much better than the bus in Germany!
One day we went to a nearby uninhabited agricultural island, to collect some turtle hatchlings and release them out in the open water. Another great experience was the manta boat-trip ... for one whole day we searched for mantas in different sites around Baa Atoll.
All in all I can say that my 6 weeks’ volunteering ... was a great experience, I met a lot of nice and very friendly people and I learned a lot about turtles, fish species and corals in the beautiful tropical waters around the Maldives.
Nicole (Germany) 2016
The first week was a busy one as three new rehab turtles turned up in three consecutive days. I have also been busy with guest snorkel trips, dolphin cruises, scientific projects, coral reef monitoring and surfing world class waves at the local breaks!
I have been here for the last five wonderful weeks ... such great fun and every day is so varied ... to learn all I can about the amazing marine life in the Maldives.
Adam (UK) 2016
From literally stepping out of the airport and onto the resort speedboat, I was completely blown away by how amazing the Maldives is; hot sun, blue skies, and crystal-clear waters … paradise!
In my first week, I spent a lot of time learning about and working with the resident sea turtles ... Caring for these turtles has been great fun and each one has its own personality.
... we were lucky to encounter a large pod of false killer whales, which was an incredible experience!
The teams at both resorts are a fantastic group of people and I enjoyed every moment working with them all.
Mark (UK) 2016
The Seamarc team were excellent teachers (thank you!) and everyone was very patient so I learnt very quickly.
I will always be eternally grateful for this opportunity ... A very sincere thank you from the bottom of my heart for everyone’s encouragement, hard work and dedication. My short time here has allowed me to learn so many things that otherwise might not have been possible.
The memories I have forged here will always have a special place in my heart ♡ … what a wonderful country!
Janice (Singapore) 2017