As you can see this is truly paradise. Beautiful coconut palms with coconuts everywhere, waves lapping on a white sand beach and warm crystal clear aqua coloured water. On Sunday I rented a bicycle and went as far south as the road would take me stopping regularly to soak in the beauty of the reef on one side of the island and the beach on the other side of the island. There were many coconut plantations along the way with coconuts littering the ground everywhere. I especially enjoy the stops looking out over the reef watching the waves crash into the reef and having the cooling breeze flow over me. I then headed north past the airport to the gorgeous beach photographed above where I swam and then husked a coconut, poked 2 holes in it and drank the milk. I then cracked it on a rock and had a delicious snack and then brought the rest of it back to the boat. I then proceeded to the end of the road where the pass into the atoll is and enjoyed the spectacular view.
Yesterday we had some unsettled weather and our walk to the pearl farm was a wet one. While there
We saw nurse sharks attempting to eat the bread thrown into the water for the fish in the enclosure.
A moray eel dart out from under the coral and then back under the coral again as it is doing here. We looked at all the beautiful black pearls and all the different sizes available. We also saw
Today we had a tour of the pearl farm. The farm starts by purchasing 6 month old black pearl oysters from a neighbouring island as this atoll is too deep and too big for them to find and harvest the 6 month old black pearl oysters. The oysters are male for the 1st 2 years and then turn female. If they are stressed they remain male. Only male oysters produce pearls. So at 6 months they stress the oysters and they clean them every 6 months to continue to stress them. There is a Japanese who comes to implant the perfectly round balls into the shells with a piece of the black lip from one of the oysters. He has open the shell, implant the lip and ball into the sack in under 2 minutes or the oysters dies. They clean the outside of the oyster shells every 6 months and after 2 years they harvest the pearls and implant another ball the same size as the one they removed and let it grow for 2 years. It was fascinating to learn about this process. To swim out and watch them bring in the net with 20 oysters. Watch them being opened and retrieving the pearls