Restorf Island

General Information

The waters around Restorf Island hold an incredible diversity of marine life. It would be possible to spend a week diving here and still find new things in the various habitat types around the island. Depth is from the surface, down to 32 metres and this site is one of many that area also excellent for snorkelling.

On the main reef, a ridge running at a 45 degree angle away from the island is a profusion of coral growth, especially gorgonian fans and black tree corals, with many anemones occupied by Clown Anemonefish near the second boat mooring. There is a great variety of reef fishes along the full length of the main reef and towards the far end, Black Tip and Gray Reef Sharks are often seen.

On the western side of Restorf, the reef slopes downward away from a wall in a patchwork of loosely connected coral bommies, many serving as anchors for gorgonian fans, sea whips, barrel sponges and elephant ear sponges. Among these live many species of smaller reef fish such as hawkfish, gobies, colourful anthias and numerous invertebrates including nudibranchs, shrimp, feather duster worms and an occasional octopus.

On the sandy flats between the island and the reef are large colonies of garden eels, at least four species of shrimp gobies, burrowing gobies, sand anemones, occasional flatheads and flounders.

Watch out for the Titan and Yellowmargin (or Pink-Faced) Triggerfish over the sandy areas. Usually easy to spot, these fish excavate large depressions in the sand and rubble in which to lay their eggs. Observe from a distance though and don't get too close as the males have been known to bite divers when they are guarding eggs in the nest.

What you might see ...

A small selection of features of Restorf Island.

  • Gorgonian Fans
  • Black Tree Corals
  • Anemones
  • Clown Anemonefish
  • Great variety of Reef Fishes
  • Black Tip Reef Sharks
  • Gray Reef Sharks
  • Sea Whips
  • Barrel Sponges
  • Elephant Ear Sponges
  • Hawkfish
  • Shrimp Gobies
  • Burrowing Gobies
  • Anthias
  • Nudibranch
  • Shrimp
  • Feather Duster Worms
  • Octopus
  • Garden Eels
  • Sand Anemones
  • Flathead and Flounder
  • Titan Triggerfish
  • Pink-Faced Triggerfish