Expedition update: Norman Reef

The summer is upon us! The water is about 28 degrees at the surface and outside of the water is even hotter. Despite the warm conditions, we are still fully covered from head to toe underwater because the warm waters also bring marine stingers (jellyfish). The most dangerous of these are the Irukandji, only about 1-2cm in size and often not seen. Since we cover larger areas than the normal recreational diver, it is better to be safe than sorry. Today, we circumnavigated Norman Reef, and it is easy to see why this reef is so popular. The reef structure of the exposed side was not the common continuous reef slope that we would expect but had many plateauing areas, where numerous boulder corals and small bommies stood out along the reef. During our dives we encountered a very large school of Bumphead Parrotfish, grazing heavily on the corals and leaving little in their wake.