Along the east coast of Koh Torinla a hard coral plateau breaks the water’s surface at low tide. Large fields of staghorn corals and massive porites corals dominate the shallows. Cardinalfish, humpnose bigeye bream, twin-spot and 5-lined snappers profilate. Just off the coast lies a 120 metre long rocky ridge that acts as a magnet for fish life. Pinnate batfish, barramundi, schools of bumphead parrotfish, blue-lined and pickhandle barracuda are common on the deeper east side that drops to 31 metres, and Spanish mackerel and grey reef sharks often pay fleeting visits to this island. White tip reef sharks frequently rest on the surrounding sands or can be spotted cruising the ridge top at 7 to 25 metres.
To get back to the reef slope you’ll need to pass over an expanse of sand, where eagle rays and shovelnose rays occasionally travel. This area hosts mantis shrimps and the endemic Andaman, or blue-spotted, jawfish. You may be lucky to sight this most colourful family member hovering above its rubble burrow. Else you may be even luckier to see it peering out of its burrow, replete with a full brood of eggs delicately balanced in its protective mouth.