All around the world, divers are dying to get back in the water, but perhaps we should wait even a little longer?
Over the past few weeks, millions of people have been home-bound due to the coronavirus, leaving roads deserted and waterways and shores quiet. The lockdown has already shown noticeable effects on our planet’s biodiversity, as wildlife and marine creatures have had a chance to recover and flourish. Below we list a few examples of wildlife roaming more freely while we continue to stay inside!
Murky Waters of Venice go clean
With the absence of tourists and local residents staying inside, less sediment is being kicked up by gondolas in the world-famous canals of Venice. Hence, the usually murky waters of Venice are becoming quiet, clear and habitable for all creatures living in and by the water. Various species of fish, swans and even dolphins have been roaming the tranquil waters.
Crocodiles take over the beach
Every year, travelers flock to La Ventanilla, a popular ecotourism destination in Oaxaca, Mexico to take wildlife pictures of the local crocodile community. Usually the reptiles stay in a nearby lagoon to escape the crowds, but with the tourists away, they have come out to play. As the beach is temporarily closed to human sunbathers, five large crocs took their chances to enjoy the sun on this usually crowded shoreline, making the rounds on social media.
Whales & Orcas ‘hear’ silence for the first time
Due to the lockdown, the amount of ships sailing our oceans has decreased dramatically, resulting in more tranquil waters and a significant drop in underwater noise pollution. Scientists state that for the first time in years, whales and other cetaceans are able to enjoy a silent ocean. They believe that this benefits their communication and gives them the courage to explore places they usually tend to avoid. For the first time in more than 50 years, a pod of orcas was spotted in Indian Arm near Metro Vancouver by local residents, and a pair of whales was filmed playing near the usually bustling port city of Marseilles in southern France.
Turtles nest in broad daylight
It is known that every year, bales of olive ridley sea turtles travel to the eastern Indian state of Odisha for mass nesting, so nothing out of the ordinary here. This spring (March 2020), however, marine conservationists witnessed mass nesting of the species during the day. This is quite unique, as the last time scientists recorded such a sighting, was almost seven years ago, in 2013.
Whether this event is directly related to the lockdown is yet to be confirmed, but it goes without saying that with less people around, there has been less human interference to the nesting site, reducing the casualties of the sea turtles or the damages their eggs would undergo with human traffic on the beach.
About the Author
Tars Geerts is a seasoned marketer, content creator and business development manager with a strong passion for languages, startups and the ocean. Surfing or diving on weekends, and working in a fast-paced startup environment during the week, he is on a mission to make more people fall in love with the ocean.