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Dominica Scuba Diving
Dive Sites: Champagne Bay

 Champagne is one of Dominica’s “signature” dive sites. Shallow enough to be enjoyed by snorkelers and scuba divers alike, it derives its name from the presence of a shallow “fumarole”  A fumarole is a volcanic vent from which seeps gasses and mineral rich heated water.  Water temperatures over this vent can be in the 90’s and a constant bubbling of gasses allows divers to enjoy a truly unique experience, similar to diving in a mild oceanic hot tub.

 Champagne Scuba Dive Site Dominica

Water temperatures right at the seep are hot enough to deter growth of any organisms besides hardy bacteria, which form filamentous mats.  Nearby however, there is an abundance of life that basks in the warm nutrient rich waters.  Large sponges colonize closest to the seep, and corals begin to take hold a little further away.  Between the outcroppings many juvenile fishes take shelter.  Often there is a school of reef squid that hover above the sand flats between outcroppings, sheltered by the hot water from larger predators, and always on the lookout for a tasty snack of young fishes.

Depths above the seeps range from 5-15 feet.  Several reefs extend deeper along the shoreline, but there are few sites in the immediate area that are deeper than 45 feet.  There are also two shipwrecks that lie in deeper water.  Sunk intentionally in 1994, the Debbie Flo was a confiscated smugglers boat.  Another metal boat lies nearby, but has largely disintegrated over the years.  Both can be found in water depths ranging from 60-95 feet.
Most scuba divers access these dive sites from boats, but Champagne can be reached from shore, making it an especially attractive site for snorkeling.

 

 
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 Dominica Reef Squid

Reef squid cruise near the water surface in Champagne bay.


 
 

 
           

 

 

 

         

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