Spring is in the air and as we race towards March and April subtle differences begin to show. In Sharm spring doesn’t seem to have such an impact – the weather is already hitting the high twenties, the desert doesn’t normally appear to show noticeable signs of new buds blossoming like a European spring and the day light hours have a less dramatic change. However underwater it is whole different story and with this change most Dive Guides who have worked the winter will be full of the joys of the underwater spring.
The water temperatures start to warm up. Dive Guides gradually start to peel off layers and start to dive wet casting their dry suits aside. The fish and corals start to spawn and there are more sightings of juvenile species. March and April also are the months when the Red Sea occasionally clouds a little. The visibility is slightly less than the normal twenty metres plus, but with this ever so slight disadvantage comes an advantage. The slight fogginess is due to a plankton bloom which for plankton feeders is a veritable feast.
So who are the super heroes of the plankton feeders? It can only be the magnificent Manta ray and the wonderful Whale Shark. If you have not been diving in Sharm in March or as we call it ‘Manta March’ you should add it to your wish list of dive holiday months. Add one of our super spotter Dive Guides and you will have a week blessed with sightings of these beautiful graceful creatures.
The other massive significance affecting the season of Spring, which is felt across the northern hemisphere is the Spring Equinox. This year it falls on 20th March at 22.45 GMT. The word equinox is derived from the Latin word meaning ‘equal night’. At the Spring and Autumn Equinox the tilt of the Earth relative to the Sun is zero, which means that Earth’s axis neither points towards or away from the Sun. As we know the tilt of the earth affects the tides which in turn affect the underwater world. The tides will be the highest and lowest during this period and are known as ‘Spring Tides’ due to the Equinox and the new moon check out this educational youtube clip. So get ready to fly as the currents will be fast – just the right dive to watch a Manta gracefully perform a fly-by.