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We continued down the east coast to the Florida Keys for some more diving and snorkelling and stayed at a camp-site called Caluso Park on Key Largo. The Keys are joined to the mainland by causeways and bridges. The toll-road is the most picturesque way to enter the Keys, worth the couple of dollars for the spectacular views.

Setting Out

Setting out from the Keys, Jean to do some snorkelling, me to do some diving. Taken with the MK10 above water again.

Because our time was so short, we only visited one of the Keys, but the impression we gained from talking to people was that they are not all that different to one another. They are a linked chain of mangrove islands with artificial beaches and harbours, mostly out of sight of the road. All that you actually see driving through the Keys is the road itself and the buildings on either side. It isn't like the Spanish Costas! The really interesting action (at least for me) is on the coral reefs a mile or two off-shore beneath the shallow coastal waters.

Here are some of the critters we found under the water at Key Largo.

Midnight Parrot Fish

Midnight Parrot Fish, trying to hide in a crevice.

French Angelfish

Another of those incredibly beautiful French Angel Fish.


Almost as beautiful: my diving buddy Denni.

Shoal of Great Barracuda

A passing shoal of Great Barracuda. These guys were bigger than me!


And here I am, for comparison. Note the absence of a wet-suit.

Sunshine Fish

A shoal of Sunshine Fish getting out of my way.

The Americans thought the water was very cold (71F at the surface, 69F at 20 meters) and wrapped-up warm in thick wet suits. For a Northern European like me it was luke-warm and I was able to dive in my T-shirt and shorts!

On my fifth and final dive at Florida Keys the Captain of the dive boat put me in a threesome with two High School girls who were novices and instructed us to follow a particular reef and the boat would be waiting for us at the other end. Due to chasing after fish etc. I somehow ended-up following the wrong reef and the three of us came up about half a mile away from the boat! It was a tiny bit embarrassing and we were floating around for half an hour or so waiting to be "rescued", but I told the Captain that it was a trick to get the girls to myself for a while and he accepted the excuse. Sorry girls!

Girls Following

The two High School girls, faithfully following me in the mistaken belief that I know where I'm going.

I can't look!

I can't bear to look!

great egret

The whole of southern Florida is a bird-lover's paradise, with pelicans, cormorants, woodpeckers, egrets, buzzards - far more birds than I can name. This magnificent great egret was just wandering around a Keys parking-lot, hoping to find some lunch-time left-overs.


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