Tulum, Mexico May 2013
Morelet’s crocodile (Crocodylus moreletii, also known as Mexican crocodile or Belize crocodile) near Tulum, Mexico.
I went swimming at a lesser known cenote outside Tulum. It is a small freshwater pond popular with some scuba divers that go exploring the cave system that connects this small lake to other bodies of water.
It is a very quiet place, without the large groups of tourists that visit nearby Gran Cenote every day. There is a lot of vegetation in the forest around the pond with many native orchids like Vanilla planifolia and Encyclia belizensis.
The pond is about 7 m (22 ft) deep and the water at the bottom is very clear and colder while the top half is milky with no visibility.
There are 2 Mexican crocodiles living in the pond. They are about 5 year old and they eat the abundant fish.
One of the crocodiles rests usually in the same muddy spot, except when scuba divers are present as they seem to dislike the sound of the bubbles underwater.
I just went with my snorkeling gear, and with patience and slow moving it was possible to take photos of the crocodile without spooking it.
My underwater camera, Nikon AW100 was very slow at writing files on the memory card, making really hard to take good photos from below the water. There was sometimes a 10 second delay. Ever since Nikon service replaced my camera with the newer AW110 that would have been a lot better for this.
I saw another crocodile in a much larger cenote closer to the ocean near the Sian ka’an nature preserve. The water there was brackish and in that case it could have been an American crocodile that is larger and prefers brackish or salt water.
repost with attribution