02 March 2019
We explored the mangroves in Nuevo Vallarta by dinghy. The tide was out, which gave us a good chance that we might spot a crocodile! Eyes open at every bend of the lagoon, we spotted many herons on the muddy banks.
It was left unsaid, but I knew both of us wanted to be the first one to spot a crocodile. We have a friendly competition going on all the time...who finds the best or biggest shell, who spots a whale first, and the list goes on.
David won the "honor" this time! Just off of our dinghy, half on the muddy shore and half in the water, lurked a crocodile with one eye on us. The croc was camouflaged and looked like it was just a floating log.
David maneuvered the dinghy so it was pointing directly at the croc, and I was at the bow with camera pointed and focused. The croc stayed still, didn't move, one eye still on us. As we got even closer, the croc suddenly lunged in the water and snapped its big jaws directly at the dinghy! As I was still at the bow, front line to the croc, I let out a cry for David to back up...quickly! It seemed to me that he took his time, slowwwly backing away, while laughing at my state of fright!
As we continued to meander deeper into the lagoon, we finally looked up into the mangroves. There were iguanas everywhere resting on the branches. At first, their colors blended into the leaves and were difficult to spot. Once our eyes knew what to look for, we lost count!
The lagoon is developed with two marinas and homes along its banks. We are hopeful that the "clean marina" plan in place helps to maintain this delicate balance between life in the mangroves and people who enjoy its beauty.