Asdhoo, North Male Atoll - a good anchorage with great snorkelling
Position 04:27.600 N 073:38.775 E
Date 1500 (UTC+5) Wednesday 16 March 2016 through to Sunday 20 March 2016
Distance run 46.8nm over the ground
Another day of mainly motoring took us to the north of the North Male Atoll where we met up with Flomaida who arrived from Hulhulemale two hour before us. We anchored, alongside Flomaida, in 7 metres on sand, one mile to the west of the island resort of Asdoo and just south of an extensive reef that was to provide excellent snorkelling. This was definitely a centre and aft awning stop and we stayed extra days when Flomaida returned to Male to take delivery of their replacement in mast furling motor from DHL.
Wonderful shade under the centre and aft awnings
We snorkelled a number of times taking the dinghy over the reef and working various points along the northern side where the coral and fish were best. It is unfortunate that the reef was infested with the highly destructive and invasive Crown of Thorns starfish. Once established these critters breed at an alarming rate and destroy live coral. Wouldst that we had the equipment to remove or destroy them. We read that various dive organisations have cleared tens of thousands from this atoll by capture and burning. There is also reports that success has been found injecting them with a small quantity of vinegar but further research is required to ensure that this method which leaves the remains of the star fish as a slime does not cause unwanted collateral damage.
In the absence of impressive coastal scenery here are some snorkelling images. Fish are the most infuriating things to photograph, they just will not stand still and say “cheese”. It is great fun trying however and then trawling though the results to try and identify what you were actually taking a photograph of.
The dreaded Crown of Thorns munching its way through coral
A camera shy turtle on the Asdhoo Reef
One of our favourites; an Oriental Sweetlips
I believe that this striking little number is a Meyer’s Butterflyfish