On-board Diary: Roques de Anaga, Tenerife, September 27, 2009
Author: Ana de la Torriente
Date: September 27, 2009
The entire reserve of Roques de Anaga at the north end of the island of Tenerife is made up of two volcanic rock formations in the sea where there are singular animal and plant species. Besides being the place where the only known Gallot's lizard (Gallotia galloti insulanagae) population can be found, it is an important area for birds because 6 different species have been observed to nest there.
While the divers were diving in the area, Indi, Ricardo and Mónaco, spent their time birdwatching. They placed special interest in finding a Bulwer's petrel (Bulweria bulwerii) or a Madeira petrel (Oceanodroma castro), two species listed for the area. They were unsuccessful, but they were able to spot a peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) on the rocky wall.
As for underwater life, the divers were documenting an impressive rocky slope from 8 to 40 meters. They once again found a blanquizal (rocky bottom) on a pretty bed of basaltic rocks where the presence of red gorgonians (Leptogorgia ruberrima) and yellow gorgonians (Leptogorgia viminalis). These are two species that, in spite of being easy to find in the Canary Islands, we had barely documented them up until now.
In this same area, but farther away from the shore, we dove with the ROV for about 3 hours. Once again we documented small coral (Coenosmilia fecunda, Dendrophyllia cornigera), sea whips (Funiculina quadrangularis), gorgonians (Narella bellissima) and several different fish species (Setarches guenteri, Grammicolepis brachiusculus, Helicolenus dactylopterus, Aulopus filamentosus).