ISLAND GREAT HAMMERHEADS
A BIG FISH EXPEDITIONS TRIP
Yet again we had
phenomenal great hammerhead action in Bimini this year. On
our first week we lost two days to weather but other than
that, the shark action was world class. Interestingly, after
three years of contact with divers, the hammerheads are much
more relaxed so the encounters are more consistent and the
photographic opportunities are even better than before.
The number of hammerheads was up. On our best
day last year, 9 different hammerheads showed up. This year
we were hoping for 10 but we destroyed that record during
our second week when 13 different great hammerheads showed
up for lunch. It was a sublime feeling to be surrounded by
huge but gentle hammerheads all day long.
One evening on each week we also extended the
encounters into the night. The hammerheads were more than
happy to hang around hoping for an extra tidbit or two.
Focusing our cameras with the lights
streaming down from Neal Watson's dive boat, we were able to
capture some dramatic images of the sharks against the inky
Even during the two days that we lost to
weather, we made the most of the opportunity by switching to
a different boat with a shallow draft. We went deep into the
mangroves where small sharks can often be seen. There we
found some nurse sharks hiding under the roots of red
mangrove trees, large stingrays hunting on the tidal flats
and all manner of strange mangrove critters like upside-down
jellies and enormous leopard-spotted sea hares.
We also visited the shark lab and learned a
great deal about their ongoing hammerhead shark research
Perhaps the most challenging photographic
opportunity came midway through week two when some of us
crowded onto the swim step to attempt to capture some ground
breaking over/under images of the hammerheads at sunset. It
was a tricky shoot but lots of fun.
We also sailed over to Triangle Rocks and Gun
Cay one day to shoot some other shark species. At Triangle
Rocks we conducted a feed with Caribbean reef sharks and
tiny blacknose sharks. The blacknoses were skittish
especially with all of us chasing them across the reef but
we did manage to get some images of both species.
Gun Cay is an interesting little uninhabited
island that I had not visited before. While there we struck
out on the bull sharks we were hoping to see but we enjoyed
a fun feed in the shallows with some enormous southern
stingrays and more blacknose sharks and a few juvenile
blacktips. All in all it was a great day in the water and we
still made it back to the hammerhead grounds for dusk
encounter with our favourite sharks!
Bimini delivered endless epic encounters this year. I can
only imagine how good it is going to be in 2016 when the
hammers are even friendlier!
Join us in Bimini for our
Great Hammerhead Adventure