Ustica Sicchitello Dive
Medium / High Difficulty – Depth 0/40 meters
Ustica Sicchitello Dive, in the blue illuminated by the rays of the sun, large fish and schools of barracudas whirl around the rocky spiers, teeming with life, of this shoal.
Considered the most demanding dive of the whole island, due to the descent into the blue and the depth, the Sicchitello is placed on a detrital / sandy bottom extended on the 40/60 m bathymetric from which a series of rocky pinnacles of imposing dimensions grouped together to form a single shoal. The site offers spiers with different morphology and extends abundantly in width towards the bottom. It is sometimes possible to admire the fusion at the base of the same and at the same time enjoy the vision of scenarios of rare beauty, with vertical walls colonized by a different life.
The Sicchitello is the place where benthic life stands out, even if in summer, sometimes, the mucilagginous algae hide its charm by covering the rock and the coralliggeno. A multitude of brown and red algae populate the rock at the top of the pinnacles, with seasonal presence of sargasso; descending altitude gives way to red gorgonians (Paramuricea clavata), yellow gorgonians (Eunicella cavolinii) and various branches of Savalia savaglia. In a pelagic environment, that is, in open water, the show is unique: barracudas and ducts, as well as large amberjacks, are a practically constant presence, with large fish carousels unique in the Mediterranean. Occasionally, good sized snappers are also sighted, quite confident, while banded bream and salpe are almost ignored for too many things to observe. Black and pink damselfish make the atmosphere even richer close to the rocks, with their dense swarms that move in unison. Sicchitello Shoal is located in zone C of the Ustica Island Protected Marine Area.
Paying attention to the microcosm, among the gorgonians there are many smaller fish and large well hidden red scorpionfish. A particularity are the alcyonaries (Alcyonium acaule), which are difficult to identify, and the splendid gorgon star, Astrospartus mediterraneus, an ofiura of extraordinary beauty.
The studios are rented with a short tourist lease without the provision of personal services (Article 4 of Legislative Decree 50 \ 2017).