Our 2018 Mexican Crocodile Expedition in a Nutshell:
So far, on all of our crocodile snorkeling trips, we have been really lucky with weather and great encounters. This one was another awesome crocodile trip 🙂
There were lots of crocodiles around but Gambit (a rather friendly 11ft croc) stole the show.
On our last day at the atoll, the crocs were very difficult to lure close to the shack where we snorkel with them but prior to that, the action was very consistent.
At the end of the day when the light was dropping, I took some shots in partial darkness. I think the result is a nice effect.
While at the atoll we enjoyed the usual great reef diving. Chinchorro continues to have healthy reefs due to strict fishing controls that the fishermen themselves have put in place to avoid depleting the reefs.
We squeeze in a reef dive each morning before we start wrangling crocodiles. The diving would be worth doing just for fun but we also collect invasive lionfish which keeps the reef healthy and gives us a supply of crocodile food.
The nurse sharks around Chinchorro have wised up to the lionfish hunters. They know that when a lionfish is speared, there is a chance they may get a free meal if they move in quickly enough. Mostly, they go hungry but its fun watching them swim along with the dive group.
We visited the ranger station and photographed the crocs in the lagoon.
The enormous resident iguanas are always a favorite photo subject too.
This year, as a special treat, the rangers let us handle some baby crocodiles that they had rescued from an exposed nest. When the bulk of the crocs hatch, any stragglers are left for scavengers to eat but these three little runts got lucky. They were only a couple of days old but aready capable of biting anything that came close to their pint-sized jaws.
I tried to get shots of as many guests as possible swimming with the crocs.
I also tried to nail a few split frame shots.
And some shots from the surface.
Of course I have to mention the luxurious Chateau Chinchorro! Our scruffy but quaint fishing hut where we stay while snorkeling with crocodiles 🙂
The shack is on stilts at the edge of the atoll, far from any light polution. So, in the evening we had a beautiful view of the Milky Way.
Once back from Chinchorro we spent a night relaxing at our hotel and then enjoyed a day of diving around Xcalak.
On our first dive we ran into a friendly manatee that came back twice during the dive to get better look at us.
We also dove among a huge school of resident tarpon, some of which must have been 1.5m long!
Before we knew it we were on our way back to Cancun for the flight home. Another great croc trip successfully concluded.
Join us next August for our 2019 Crocodile Snorkeling Expedition. If you like adventure, this is a trip you’ll never forget.