Andaman and Nicobar Islands is home to some of the most spectacular species of marine life in the world. With over 560 different species of corals recorded until date, the sheer colour and diversity of the sights underwater can leave you spellbound. The Andaman Islands pose snorkeling and scuba diving as one of their key attractions. One of the few tourist attractions in India for underwater activities, the corals in Andaman Islands makes it a must visit for everyone.
Apart from being mesmerized by the beauty of the world within your world, what do you really see underwater? This article takes you through some of the marine life and corals you may see during your dive or underwater walk.
In a typical reef you’ll find corals, snails, clams, sponges, anemones, crabs, worms, starfish, shrimps, lobsters, sea cucumbers, sea lilies, fish such as groupers, snappers, breams, surgeonfish, damselfish, butterflyfish, parrotfish, clownfish and a number of other highly coloured ornamental fish, sharks, turtles, dolphins, green algae, brown algae, red algae, sea grasses and dozens of other animal and plant groups that you’ve not even heard of. And all of them represented by dozens of species!
Before you get over your head, do know that you will not see all of them in your first dive… or even in your first few dives. Some of the soft corals live below the depth of 5 meters so you will need to a little bit of experience and guidance before you get there.
Here is a quick walk-through on the basics of marine life you may see underwater in the Andaman Sea:
Now that you know what to expect underwater, it is time to don your scuba gear and learn to dive! Want to know more about scuba diving in Andaman Islands? Read this
A word of caution to not touch any of the corals. These are sensitive marine creatures and like all living things, we need to respect and admire from afar. You will also find sign boards on various beaches against picking up corals. In Andaman, it is a crime to collect or take corals and this is a punishable offense!
If you are interested in getting souvenirs, the shop at the Samudrika Museum can be a good place to find something you like.
There may be a day when you will come back with your children and grandchildren exploring the great reefs of Andaman. Until then, do your bit to preserve them by admiring from afar and spreading the word on the importance of their conservation.