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Sunday, 14 July 2013

Midnight Rider

What can I say? Just in from a stupendously good night dive, not least because I found one of my beloved nudibranchs! That's the whole dive for me right there, but to be fair there was plenty other goodies out there this evening.

The sun slides lazily towards the horizon as we kit up
We worked up and down the mini wall checking every nook and cranny to see what was out and about this evening. Red stripe hermit crabs were in abundance all over the coral along with some really nice white speckled hermit crabs, not to mention the odd turtle sculling past as well.

Red and speckled. I wonder what sort of hermit crab this is.......?
Brittle stars were pretty active tonight along with a multitude of yellow line arrow crabs, a healthy dollop of banded coral shrimp and a smattering of sleeping soapfish..

A pair of red stripe hermits get it on for the camera. Bow-chick-a-bow-wow!
I was off busy pestering some sharp nose puffer when Jill made a good spot of a common octopus out for quick scuttle. He was well up for being in front of the camera and got some nice video footage of him gliding and parachuting across the hardpan. It was like watching a ball of colour changing elastic. Amazing!

A lovely octopus but hardly common in my opinion
Video embedding is a bit wonky just now but here's a link to some octopus fun: HERE

There was plenty of life on the rope sponges and seafans as well so it really pays off to take your time and have a really close look. I found a fantastic decorator crab sitting on a seafan which I nearly swam right over it.
It's so fluffy!!
The one down side that gets annoying is if you shine your lights in one spot for too long you get mobbed by bloodworms which are bloody (no pun intended) annoying especially if you're shooting macro because if one gets in front of the lens then it potentially wipes out your subject.  

I was lucky to get a shot of the nudi towards the end of the dive, the bloodworms were a lot bigger! I found a lovely juvenile gold line sea goddess tucked at the base of a sponge but the bloodworms were swarming everywhere. With a bit of luck and a lot of swearing the shot paid off in the end though......

"Look! Look! A nudi! I found one!!"

What a perfect way to end out the dive, with a nudibranch. Life doesn't get better than that!

A sharp nose puffer prior to being annoyed by me