How To See More Fish While Snorkeling
Part of any great vacation is seeing the sights. Travelers love to see buildings, monuments, markets and popular tourist attractions. But some of the best sights are hidden from view. If you’re visiting a coastal destination, some of the best views are under the water. Here you can catch a glimpse of the underwater world of the sea.
Tropical waters, in particular, can show you a riotous display of color beneath the surface and the fish can especially give you something spectacular to look at. Snorkeling is an activity that doesn’t need any special skills and can be the best way to see the collection of beautifully colored fish, just waiting to show off.
Some fish may be a little timid and may hide behind rocks and coral. To see more fish when you go snorkeling, follow these top tips and see the fish that are definitely worth seeing.
1. Get Some Local Information
Local dive centers are a wealth of information. They know the best places to go snorkeling and where the best fish like to hang out. Have a chat to the local diving expert and ask them to recommend the perfect spot for snorkeling. As well as getting a glimpse of some exotic looking fish, you may be lucky enough to see many other exquisite sights hidden beneath the surface.
2. Find A Guide
Asking a local to point the right way is one thing, but you may have even more success by hiring a local guide to take you snorkeling. The benefit of hiring a guide is that they’ve most likely snorkeled the local waters dozens of times and they will be able to show you all the hidden spots where the best fish like to hide.
3. Don’t Thrash About
A fish’s natural instinct is to sit still and hide when they detect movement in the water. An overly exuberant snorkeler will frighten the fish and make them very reluctant to come out. To the fish, a snorkeler looks like a predator and excessive movement will prevent you from seeing them. Go through the water as gently as you can and try to keep a respectable distance from where they are swimming. They will be looking at you, but as long as they don’t feel threatened, you’ll be able to look back to your heart’s content.
4. Have Something Tasty On Hand
Like many animals, fish are always on the lookout for their next meal. A snorkeler may appear less threatening if they come bearing gifts of food. Have some bits and pieces of food with you and let them loose in the water as you snorkel. The fish will come closer for a nibble, but keep back a little as they will still be wary of you.
In many popular snorkeling places, the fish may have already become accustomed to strange creatures bearing gifts. This means all the hard work has been done before you took the plunge. If you keep you distance, they will come to feed. Some will be cautious, while others may come close enough to be touched.
5. Keep The Noise Levels Down
One thing that is certain to scare the fish away is noise. That is why many serious anglers like to fish in quiet. Snorkeling is not the time to be yelling across the water to your buddies. We all equate the underwater world with peace and tranquility so try to keep it that way and the fish will see you more as a curiosity they may want to investigate, rather than an obnoxious threat.
6. Don’t Let Your Mask Go Foggy
It’s perfectly natural for humans to breathe through their noses. Do this while you’re snorkeling and your mask is going to fog up. Use the snorkel to breathe and only breathe through your mouth.
Another tip many seasoned snorkelers like to employ is to smear a mild shampoo on the inside of the mask. A tiny drop is all you need so just rub the inside of your mask vigorously and follow with a quick rinse.
7. Keep Your Fingers To Yourself
Many fish in popular snorkeling spots have lost their fear of humans. Some may even come right up to you for a closer look, but more likely to see if you’ve come with food. While you may be tempted to reach out and touch one of these colorful critters, it’s probably better if you don’t. Some species of fish can be aggressive and a reaching hand may be seen as a threat. If a fish feels threatened, it may become defensive and try to bite you. The other reason you should never touch these fish is that some have poisonous spines or a mucous layer that can cause a nasty reaction.
Keep in mind that you have entered the fish’s domain, so be a polite guest and keep your hands and fingers to yourself.
8. Glide With Grace
Snorkeling is more about gliding gracefully than swimming. To blend in with the underwater inhabitants, you want to gracefully glide over the surface of the water as you view the magic under the sea. By remaining calm adopting the elegant behavior of the fish, you are more likely to float about unnoticed. By swimming around, you will be causing a ruckus and this is a sure-fire way to send the fish running for cover.
9. Stay Alert
Anytime you enter the world beneath the sea, you need to stay alert. While there are many beautiful and colorful fish to see as well as coral reefs and a myriad of other delights, the sea is also home to some pretty dangerous creatures. Some of the most noticeable ones will be sharks, but others may seem harmless, yet be infinitely more deadly. Things like jellyfish, stingrays and fish with poisonous spines that can cut your vacation short with a trip to the emergency room.
Enjoy your vacation and your snorkeling adventures, but stay alert. Keep your eyes open and remember to look around. Take special care when you try to stand so that you don’t step on anything that can result in injury.