Diving with sharks, Alimatha, Maldives
In wildlife animals usually tend to avoid encounters with people. But not in Alimatha. It is a small island in the Maldivian Vaavu atoll.
You may not believe it, but Alimatha divers play in the sand with nurse-sharks, swim alongside with them and hug sometimes. The reason for such behavior of these animals is that many years ago people started to feed them throwing food leftovers into the water. The sharks got used to this and stopped fearing people. Everyday you may find several boats with divers, preparing to go underwater.
Night diving at Alimatha is one of the most unforgettable experiences at the Maldives and an important touring point of every dive safari. This panorama was taken in 2020. At that time at Alimatha it was quite usual to find several dozens and even 50-100 sharks along with sea rays. Today the government of the Maldives forbids the feeding of sea animals, but sharks, rays and other big fish still visit these places, though their amount has decreased significantly.
I have performed scuba diving many times at Alimatha and have prepared for this technically complicated photo capture. I had an assistant who was swimming above me with two flashlights 15 000 lumen each. This helped to lighten a large underwater space. But even in this case I had to use iso 6400.
Photo by: Oleg Gaponyuk
October 28, 2022