Coringa Islets — Coral Sea–posted June 2016

Coringa Islets are comprised of Chillcott and South West Islets and are part of the large nature reserve(green zone) that also take in the  Heralds and Magdelaine Cays.

Taking it easy at rhe Coringa Ilets, summer storm heading our way.

Taking it easy at the Coringa Islets, summer storm heading our way.

They are  50nm east from the Heralds Cays, 70nm west from the Diamonds islets, 45 nm south from Willis and the Magdelaine Cays. It feels like nowhere but in the middle of everywhere.There is no reasonable sheltered anchorages, no prominent diving locations; but what a unique isolated place for a little exploring adventure when the ocean is quiet.

Coringa map

               The Coral Sea. A great place to explore. The map was taken from my superb iSailor App

coringa islets sunset

coringa islets clouds

Coringa islets sunset birds

South West Islet

Our last visit was in 2014 when we snuck in between coral heads to within 400 Meters of the shore. I jumped into the water for my anchorage survey snorkel; all was ok, we weren’t going to bump into anything even though we had pushed the coral friendship to its limit. I enjoyed that little snorkel: four turtles, a big Tawney Shark and an annoying two me Grey Whaler that I know was harmless but never the less it made me feel uncomfortable by following me around all the time like a stray dog.
Eventually, I free-dived down and swam straight at it. I never saw it again after my unfriendly gesture.
The Islet is small with lots of marine birds: Terns, Black & Common Noddies, Boobies, Frigates, one juvenile Tropical Bird, and a little community of what I think were Bridled Terns. We picked up Asian water bottles and rubbish around the edges and came back to the boat on dark to give the nesting turtles a clear run up the beach.

South West Islet

    South West Islet

Syl with a few Lesser Frigate birds on the fringing shrubbery .

           Syl with a few Lesser Frigatebirds on the fringing shrubbery.

coringa SW islet_0048

coringa SW islet_0123

How did this large dory end up in the middle of the islet?

How did this large dory end up in the middle of the islet? Now home to a nesting Brown Booby.

Chilcott Islet

Chilcott Islet is like  South West Island with only a small reef area around the cay. We anchored in 10m depth with a coral head rising to within three meters under our stern: that was a great scenario for a night dive. We were not disappointed. Syl was the spotter and found so many colourful nudibranchs and critters my camera ran hot.

chillet night & dawn dive heralds 2014_0169

                                The night dive revealed some excellent macro subjects.

Coringa Islet nudi

Coringa islets chillet night dive

coringa chilcot-house proud hermit crab

          Picking up the washed up rubbish.
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