apr 26 – Aggressive moray eels that actually slither out of the water to attack land crabs on Clipperton Island!! And bite our divers!

It is an amazing privilege to be granted permission by the Republic of France to take our guests ashore at Clipperton Atoll – a true desert island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.  Hundreds of thousands of masked, brown, and red footed boobies litter the shores, with literally millions of bright orange land crabs scurrying around through their tunnels just below the hard crust of guano covering the surface. A few rats were spotted in one area. Several guests were lucky enough to see the famous Clipperton morays as they slither out of the ocean in areas of shallow tide pool to pick off the crabs that live near the water line.
The morays observed doing this were all quite small and presumably juveniles, who have possibly found that finding a meal along the waters edge is easier than competing with the adults who rule the reef. The moray population at Clipperton is significantly larger than on your typical reef, and their behaviour is thus affected. In their hunt for food they have become more aggressive. It is the norm to see them swimming freely along the reef, and not unusual to have them follow divers, often getting unusually close. We’ve had two incidents of moray bits on our previous three trips, but none so far this year (knocking on wood).
– Captain Gordon Kipp

By Nautilus Staff

Updates, exciting information and other news from the staff at Nautilus Liveaboards.

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