|Site Type:||Kandu or channel drift dive.|
|Location:||North east end of South Malé Atoll.|
The Embudhoo Express is a site that is dived on the incoming tide, allowing for a fast-paced drift dive through a channel into the lagoon. The dive started with a drop into the blue water on the outer edge of the atoll. In the clear blue water I could see grey reef sharks, barracuda and trevally. Once all the divers were ready we followed our guide along the reef wall until we reached the start of the channel. This is where the Embudhoo Express gets its name, as here the current picked up and so did the marine life.
Deploying a reef hook, everyone clipped onto a ledge or dead piece of coral so we could watch the passing parade of pelagics. Cruising in the current were mackerel, batfish, fusiliers, turtles, Maori wrasse, whitetip reef sharks and a dozen grey reef sharks.
Unfortunately, the sharks stayed frustratingly out of camera range, but were still wonderful to watch. We did get a lot closer to a large blotched stingray that was resting on the bottom.
After dangling at the end of the reef hook for twenty minutes we unclipped and zoom along the channel wall. It is an exhilarating ride. To slow down I poked my head into numerous caves and ledges and found most lined with soft corals and gorgonians. In the caves were also gropers, squirrelfish, soldierfish, rock cods, pufferfish and pretty sweetlips.
We finished the dive in a shallow coral garden, seeing a great variety of reef fish and some lovely hard coral. Finally out of the current I got a chance to observe the butterflyfish, angelfish, wrasse, damselfish, surgeonfish and other species that are unique to these Indian Ocean waters.