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Updated by Joanna James on Feb 11, 2018
Headline for Common Fish you can see while Diving and Snorkelling in Maldives – Exotic Marine Life
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Joanna James Joanna James
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Common Fish you can see while Diving and Snorkelling in Maldives – Exotic Marine Life

Maldives can boast over 1,100 species of marine life, which offers biodiversity not present in any other location. Listed are some of the most popular species that lure divers to explore the area.

1

The Whale Shark

This is the biggest living fish species, which despite its huge size is harmless. They are spotted by divers in the Maldives, especially during the southwest monsoon from around the east coast and from the west coast during the northeast monsoon period. The whale shark is a rare endangered species that is protected. To date, no specimen of this fish has been collected. The most notable characteristic of the fish is its cavernous mouth housing rows of minute teeth.

2

The Tawny Nurse Shark

When you dive around sites close to hotels like Niyama Private Islands Maldives, you just may spot one of these tough and rather hardy species of shark. Growing up to lengths of around three metres, this shark has colourings that veer around tan to a darker grey brown with a pale under belly. The shark is often seen whilst snorkelling in Maldives as they frequent shallow waters. They also head down to depths of 70 metres as they feed on bottom dwellers, small fish and corals. They are nocturnal and can be caught resting during the day in underwater caves and overhangs.

3

The Zebra Shark

A long caudal fin is this shark's most distinctive feature. It frequents coral reefs and is a rather slothful nocturnal shark. This species feeds on sea snakes, crustaceans, molluscs and fish. The adults are marked with dark brown spots while the juveniles are dark brown in colour and sport yellow coloured vertical stripes. This species is not often spotted in the Maldives and is generally seen by divers, resting on the bottom.

4

Torpedo Rays

The average size of a Torpedo Ray is 65cms; they are a species that dwell in tropical waters and sport short fins, round flat bodies and short snouts. The eyes are situated on top of the body of this nocturnal species which has multiple camouflage like colouring which helps to keep predators away. They are a critically endangered species and are quite a fascinating discovery on any dive tour.

5

Moray Eels

The Moray Eel is the largest of the species, of which there are over 200 types that live in brackish, fresh and marine waters. As the species prefer warmer waters they are often spotted amongst coral reefs and in shallow water. Commercially fished, this species of eel is yet to fall into the endangered species. Their diet consists of small fish, crustaceans and squid.

6

The Many Banded Pipe Fish

The distinctive feature of this fish is the dorsal fin marked with over 20 rays, trunk rings of 16, and a pectoral fin with over 18 rays. The colours veer towards brownish reds while the species is known to habitat reef slopes and caves. The Banded Pipe Fish is quite common in the Maldivian waters but are often missed by divers as they tend to dwell in dark caves.