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Posts tagged “Red Sea

Spanish Dancer

IMG_1276Okay it’s Halloween in NYC and I am not there. I wish. But rather than pull an old image from my archives, I will regale you with another tale. In a round about way there is a costume somewhere?

In all the night dives over the past three seasons, I had yet to encounter a Spanish dancer. It is a mollusk. I have seen a picture on a poster at the dive center. But it was a goal of mine to finally see and photograph one myself. So on this night which started so slowly, Farid suddenly began swinging his light wildly to make me stop and join him. I have to admit he finds some of the best wildlife.IMG_1274

I had to check my book later. But, yes, it’s a Spanish dancer! And yes we played with it. Lifting it above the sea floor it flapped and wiggled down to the sand again. I guess that’s why they call it a dancer. Or otherwise it is the skirtlike edge which reminds you of a Spanish dancer’s skirt. Either way this was pretty thrilling.IMG_1280

What I learned is that you never give up on a dive. Something turns up to make it special. And with all my familiarity with the reef, there is always something I haven’t seen.


Octopus

IMG_1397Yes. Don’t play with the wildlife. Sorry, we did. Farid and I saw this guy simultaneously. Never give a boy a stick. And right away we were busy prying it from its hiding place. IMG_1384

The octopus tried camouflage, then it ran, and finally a squirt of ink. I had been surprised by ink before so I was prepared to keep an eye on the octopus’s movement. No we weren’t there to eat it. So after I got my shots we retreated and the octopus swam away free of our encounter.IMG_1378It’s hard to ever see an octopus in the open. I have seen just parts of their bodies. Then, recently, I had the luck to see them frequently and even during a night dive. There are enough in the ocean to fill seafood stores and restaurant menus. I still find an octopus encounter a rare event when diving. And now I am getting some shots with tentacles. Great!


Moray Eel

IMG_0975 aI’ve been down about 150 times now since starting a database and keeping track. I have seen what there is except that always there is a twist or variation. The photo expert I dove with told me he doesn’t like eels. Well I do like them enough to take advantage of an opportunity. I was over the reef and in a crevice there was a moray stretched out. What was unusual was that he was not inside a hole in the coral but fully exposed. He was quite large. I got my shots and even had a chance to get a nice movie. Every time down you see a variation on what you might have seen before and each time it’s a chance to do it different. So I try.


Pair

IMG_0841This pair of fish moved in tandem. Brother sister, mating pair, I don’t know. We were at the decompression stop when I should be putting my gear away. But here was one more photo-op.IMG_0846


Black and White Nudibranch

IMG_0799This one is fairly common on the reef. It is not easy to see but you do run across them. The key again is to try to see the horns. If you don’t play with the wildlife then the scene and the background are determined by your subject.


Trunkfish

IMG_0736No matter how you approach you are a big air bubble blowing thing swimming about. I’ve taken to not blowing too many bubbles. I avoid making too much sound. If you can pull this off, you get a head on shot without having to capture the fish. I’ve done that too if you saw me in a posts sometime ago. In this case I did not annoy the wildlife.IMG_0738


Nudibranch

IMG_0717Common on the reef I dive, this colorful creature is always a good subject. It doesn’t move fast. The key to the image is the horns and rear tuft. The colorful coral formation was a plus. It takes a bit to set up the technical details of the exposure.


Trunkfish

IMG_0698This is described as a solitary fish on the reef. It is shy and hides as soon as you see it. Anytime I can get a shot … what’s hard to show is the mottled spots on its side. I would surprise one and then the chase. Patience is important. And then there is a little bit of luck involved. I love the two toned finish and the angles. Fish are supposed to soft and curved. This guy is built like a brick and colored to attract attention. IMG_0699


Cleaning Station

IMG_0683Wrasses are fish car washes. They hang about and clean fish going by. So it was interesting to see this one head into the gills of a passing goatfish.IMG_0739

Some days it is quite popular to get cleaned up.

IMG_0817It was intriguing to watch. The fish would pause long enough for the wrasse to work.

IMG_0827And then there might be a pause when the next fish arrived. Some fish are not so docile. I’ve seen the wrasse startle fish too.


Nudibranch

IMG_0677This particular one is not common on the reef where I dive. Yellow black and white, it should be pretty distinctive too. But no it’s not easy to spot. It is tiny. So it’s easy to miss it. One of the senior divers spotted it. It is courtesy to point out subjects. Then it is on me to get an image. I did.IMG_0677 a


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