Section in Christmas Island
Christmas Island’s narrow fringing reef supports bountiful marine life, including 88 coral species and more than 600 species of fish. It’s an underwater wonderland for divers, with clear warm waters, coral reefs and spectacular wall dives. Soft corals, feather stars and gorgonian corals grow along vast walls which plunge into a seemingly bottomless abyss. The fish community is distinctive because the island is a meeting place for Indian and Pacific Ocean fish species – it’s one of the few locations in the world where you’ll see Indian and Pacific Ocean fish swimming side by side. Some of these species interbreed to produce hybrids. Christmas Island has more hybrid fish than anywhere else in the world, making it a marine hybridisation zone of international significance. In addition to the hundreds of species of tropical fish, dolphins inhabit the island’s waters and whale sharks regularly visit during the wet season. Whale sharks generally first appear when the red crabs are spawning at the start of the wet season — they converge to supplement their plankton diet with crab larvae. Locations such as Flying Fish Cove, Ethel Beach, Dolly Beach, West White Beach, and Winifred Beach offer scuba divers and snorkellers a rewarding marine experience. At Flying Fish Cove and Ethel Beach shore diving is possible depending on the time of the year. There is excellent fishing, with sailfish, tuna and wahoo among some of the fish to be caught. You’ll find boat ramps at Flying Fish Cove and Ethel Beach.