Bongoyo patches is to the east of Bongoyo Island north of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. The reef extends out in patches. It is relatively flat dropping off on the edges and there are generally no strong currents. The reef has some dynamite damage in the shallower areas and the area is heavily fished, so there are few large fish. Never the less there are large numbers of corals and smaller fish with the odd barrel sponge as one goes deeper.
As its name Bongoyo Patches implies , the reef is patchy and large porites corals dominate some areas with associated corals and clams around them. Many varieties of wrasses not commonly seen elsewhere, such as the Twin spot wrasse can be seen at certain times of the year. Both shortspine and long spine porcupine fish can be seen, if not swimming in the open then curled up in a crevice and the black saddled toby is common. Spiny lobsters are common under the overhangs.
The occasional lionfish can also be seen either hovering along the reef or hiding in a crevice or under a small overhang. White spotted box fish , hawkfish of various types , lizard fish, leopard blennies, gold bar wrasses, six stripe wrasses and barred thicklip wrasses are common. Blue spotted stingrays hiding alongside the coral are also relatively common and the occasional crocodile fish may also be seen silently waiting for prey.
One section of Bongoyo patches is known as Pipefish city, this is a fairly big coral bommie which has a large number of pipefish on it, hence the name pipefish city. Because of the absence of larger fishes, this seems to allow the smaller fishes to proliferate, so if one has an eye for detail one will always see something new on each dive.
PHOTOS OF BONGOYO PATCHES
MARINE LIFE AT BONGOYO PATCHES
Access: By Boat Dive Operator(s): Seabreeze Marine
Difficulty: All Divers
Average Depth: 18 meters
Max Depth: 20 meters
Currents: Generally weak
Visibility: Mainly low ( 5-8)
- Very safe dive
- Small marine life is good
- Macro life is good
- The area is over fished
- Visibility can be tide and weather variable