Today’s update from Fiji was co-written by Alena and Trinity:
This morning, we all woke up bright and early with the sun shining in through the villa windows at 7 am. After a delicious, hearty breakfast of assorted cereals and toasts, we packed our dry bags ready for another shark diving adventure. After arriving at the dive shop we all suited up and made our way onto Predator and excitedly found our gear. Luckily we were the only ones on the shark dive today, so we had all the sharks and divemasters to ourselves for a VIP private shark show. A smooth ride out on the glassy ocean took us to Shark Reef Marine Reserve where we received a dive briefing. We all geared up and did our giant strides into the water.
Today, the current was ripping, so we descended down the line until we reached a depth where the current was not as strong. Everyone found their place for the first part of the shark dive, and watched in awe as the hungry Bull Sharks ravaged the tuna heads. Suddenly, we all spotted a fat Tawny Nurse Shark that we had only seen once before, so everyone was equally excited. We also saw a huge Malabar grouper that everyone was so excited to see. The Bull Sharks were very hungry because today was not a normal feeding day, and they had missed the previous normal feeding day. So it was a frenzy! When we got to the grey reef feeding, they were also very hungry and very friendly. We were definitely up close and personal with them today, as they swam around our heads and knocked our cameras. We then slowly ascended to the safety stop, struggling through the current, but thanks to our expert dive skills we did it safely and smoothly. After another great feeding with the white tips and black tips at the safety stop, we all made our way back to the boat for a delicious surface interval filled with cookies and tea. As a thank you gift, we gave the divemasters an assortment of American candies, which they loved. The second dive couldn’t come soon enough, and we all eagerly jumped in the water for another long dive with the Bull Sharks, to take more valuable data for our research projects!
When we got back to the villa, we all showered and eagerly waited for the delicious lunch yet to come. We all devoured the lunch of chicken curry and rice (and leftover cake) and then began to work efficiently on our journals and our species presentations. Finally, it was time. Everyone did an excellent job of presenting their chosen shark species, and we enjoyed a creative mix of demonstrations, raps, and poems. First, Holland taught us all about the Longnose Sawshark and included a demonstration of how the shark hunts.
Next Paige talked about the Great Hammerhead, Devin taught us all about the infamous Greenland Shark, and Trinity informed us all about the primitive Sixgill Shark. Lily taught us about the unique (and slightly frightening) cookie cutter shark, then Maddie excitedly talked about the peaceful Whale shark. Sofia excited us all with a beautifully crafted rap about Great White Sharks (set to Nicki Minaj’s Bees in a Trap). Owen then talked about the cool Spiny Dogfish, and Kevin enlightened us on the creepy Goblin Shark. Alena had the awesome Tiger Shark and rhyming poem, and Patrick presented on the elusive Megamouth. To finish off, Emmett entertained us with his presentation and demonstration of the Frilled Shark. We all learned a lot of interesting facts about each other’s sharks, as well as gaining a better understanding of our own through our research. We had some free time before dinner to play cards and hang out, and then we all enjoyed a perfectly made dinner of pancakes, vanilla French toast, and bacon!!! We shared our glums and glows for the day, and then cuddled up for a movie. It was a thrilling day, filled with adventure and learning, and we can’t wait for what will come tomorrow.
“Shark Poem” by Alena Anderson
Prowlin’ round the reef and the seagrass bed
don’t need to wait around for prey ’cause I got a head
I eat everything I see; no matter if it’s alive
Sea turtles, fish, and sharks, clothing and cars, you guys
With my super stylin’ tail I whip through the night
And with my sharp serrated teeth, fish can’t put up a fight
In the day I cruise around, having fun in the deep
But in the evening is when I hunt and when I start to creep
My name comes from the jungle cat and that’s not a lie
You can spot me by my stripes or my friendly looking eyes
Second only to the great white, the humans think I’m scary
Are tiger sharks aggressive? The answer is very.