6 Things You Need to Know Before Diving with Bull Sharks In Playa Del Carmen
it’s bull shark season here in Playa del Carmen! Each year from November to approximately March we have these incredible sharks joining us off the shore of Playa del Carmen.
In this guide, we are going to tell you all the things you didn’t know along with some safety tips to get you ready to dive with the sharks!
It is an Observation Dive
Most dives you will experience involve you swimming along a reef and exploring the underwater world. However, the bull shark dive in Playa del Carmen is only an observation experience. This is both for your safety and for the well-being of the sharks.
An observation dive means that once you reach the sandy bottom of the ocean floor, you will carefully kneel in place and watch as the sharks swim around you. There is a rope attached to the sea floor that you can hold on to, to support your balance.
Unlike on a TV screen or at an aquarium, the sharks do not just swim in front of you…Rather it is a 360-degree experience and the sharks may be behind or next to you. For this reason, make sure you turn your head around to check all angles as the best viewing action may be behind you!
It is a Deep Dive
The bull sharks congregate at a dive site known as ‘shark point’. This dive site is approximately 25 meters deep, making this a deep dive. As such, usual deep dive procedures need to be followed including regular air checks and ensuring safety stops are completed carefully.
The 30 meters depth limit for this dive means it is only suitable for advanced open water divers or beyond. If you are an open-water diver and wish to experience diving with bull sharks, there may be a possibility to complete this dive as an adventure dive. Please contact us prior to the booking so that we can ensure your safety and check your dive experience.
Although sharks may be feared actual shark attacks are extremely rare, and normally it only happens if a shark feels threatened, is confused, or is provoked.
However, it’s still important to understand some sharky behaviors and characteristics to help you understand these fascinating creatures.
If a shark feels threatened, then it may swim in a more dramatic manner, or it may lower its pectoral fins. Always give sharks a lot of space, and respect them for the incredible animals that they are by not touching them during your dive.
When diving with sharks, as with most dives, you should have a dive buddy with you to help alert you of any dangers or if any behavior seems unusual.
No Bright Colours
When diving with the sharks you should avoid wearing bright colors this includes wetsuit fins and other bright accessories. Most sharks are colorblind, but they can differentiate between bright and dark colors. If you are wearing a bright color, such as white, yellow, or any shade of neon, it can make the sharks more inquisitive, and they may want to come and see you more closely!
On a dive with the sharks in Playa del Carmen, it is regulated so that only dark equipment can be worn. All rental equipment for a shark dive is made sure it is color safe and if you have your own equipment that’s in a brighter color, please let your guide know before the dive so that you can exchange it for a piece of darker-colored rental equipment.
This also includes shiny jewelry, which sharks may mistake for fish scales.
As with all dives if you breathe calmly and steadily you will maximize the use of your air consumption. You should never hold your breath on a dive, especially when it is as deep as a bull shark dive. However, on a bull shark dive, your breathing is also important as too many air bubbles may ward off the sharks.
You also want to breathe relaxed so that you have enough air to enjoy your observation and can ascend safely at the end of the dive.
The Bull Sharks in Playa Del Carmen Are Actually Pregnant Females!
The bull sharks in Playa del Carmen are females who come here for their gestation period. And it is incredible to see them get fatter and fatter as the season progresses.
Nobody actually knows where the sharks go to give birth – they just disappear at the end of winter. But they do show up around a week later looking much slimmer! We don’t really see the baby sharks though.
Dive with the Sharks in Playa Del Carmen with DivePoint
Now that you know all about diving with the bull sharks in Playa del Carmen the next step is for you to book!
Shark dives are very special and only happen at a certain time of the year, so if you are lucky enough to be a diver in these waters during the winter season you would be a fool to miss out on this incredible experience.