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Does your turtle bite?

It happened on the second dive after we came out of the Hole. We are used to see a lot of turtles, mostly green ones, and shy too. They usually just swim away from the group. I was looking at a giant green turtle with an odd shaped sucker on its back when, just in front of me, a hawsbill female came up from the ground and swam right at me. Now usually they make a turn when they come too close, but this one did not. I just hung in the water and she came closer and closer, right up to my face. Her bill actually touched my mask and I started wondering if there were algea growing on it that she wanted to eat. But then she decided to go somewhere else.

Half of the group were a bit further, looking at some other turtles. When the whole group was together again the hawsbill came back. She still was not afraid at all, and went from one diver to the other checking us out. She almost crept into the camara's and exchanged a love bite with one of the female divers. It did not hurt at all, she told me later, but her friend kept her distance from the turtle after she saw it happening.

We were already 50 minutes into the dive when we met the turtle, but everybody had such a good time that I decided to stay down a bit longer. Distracted by the exceptional play, I did not notice that the current had taken us right under the boat and further. We passed the mooring and I missed it completely. Captain Ger saw it happening and picked us up when we surfaced after 63 minutes.

Posted by Wietze on 2010-03-19