Saturday, June 30, 2018

Lovely fishes and then those scorps!

Every time I see an Ambon Puffer fish, I try to catch a bit of the blue dorsal fin....and finally, I did!
I like the lines and dots, too. And why do the dots end midway down the tail? And why no dots on the upper back? I'm tellin' ya, these things can keep you up at night. (Well, maybe not, but maybe in a good way...)
 This 4-spot butterfly fish was all alone! Sad...usually they hang out in pairs.

I was going to call this Which Fish Doesn't Belong, but it's kinda obvious: the Blue Fin Trevally! The rest are goat fish, which hang out altogether.
 I am having a hard time again with an urchin, still trying to get the image so you can see the little ball on top of a rock.. This urchin was probably about 2 inches across, but look at the rocks it had adhered to itself! That is some kind of protection. 

Shrimp, hiding in its hole. I am still amazed that they can burrow such a neat, round hole. Well, maybe someone else does it and they just steal the space. But they do have the claws for that job.
 A lot of shells have been appropriated by Hermit Crabs. This one is the electric blue crab. 

Basket shell. maybe 1.5 inches long.
 Hawaiian Cleaner Wrasse about to get busy with the Goat Fish. This was a very busy cleaning station, with goat fish, trevally and convict tangs awaiting their cleaning.

Cowry shell hiding.
 I wonder if the Snowflake Moray eel had to back into this hole? Or maybe it knows another entry.

This Peacock Flounder was a small one that I saw immediately upon entering the Kiddie Pond. (I started there because the NO SWIMMING sign was still up near the deep side. We had a drowning recently in the deep end, so they are being even more cautious than usual. And I have adjusted my behavior to stay out of the deep end until the sign comes down. Which it did sometime after the lifeguards arrived at 9 a.m.)
 You can see another Hermit Crab at the top of the Horn Shell.

Scorpion Fish. I think this was the first, and smaller, one. Note the mouth slightly agape. I find them usually by seeing the fins with their ribs.
 It is a face only a mother could love! And for you novice snorkelers out there, that's why I try really hard not to touch the bottom, with hand or foot!

Male Trunk Fish.
 Moorish Idol having breakfast.

Close up of the Peacock Flounder skin pattern.

Pinktail Durgon showing its teeth. I usually catch them with my camera while they are running away, so this was a nice treat.
 Scorp #2. This was a larger one which was resting near where I look for octopus. See?! I managed to get almost all the way through the post without mentioning the lack of octopus sightings. I'm sad...

And it's easy to blame the seal for eating the octopuses. It could also be a human fisherman. Or maybe they are just getting better at hiding.
 Starfish wandered out from under. Not sure what rousted it, but it's unusual to see them out during the day.
 There SHOULD have been an octopus in this hole! (And if there was, I didn't see it. Drat.)
Upside down Rock Mover Wrasse. Just so you can see the clown face in the different way.

I have mentioned this in prior posts, but please please be careful and obey the signs when swimming. ESPECIALLY if you are there prior to the lifeguards arriving. And thanks for respecting the space of the seals, turtles and oh yeah, other swimmers!

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Octopus strike announced on Kauai

Yup, another swim without octopus sighting! And I'm sighing. Friends offered ideas for this lack, such as the large number of seals in the area. Sadly, I like seals, but they do have this bad habit of eating octopuses! In another vein, I have seen my past year calendars and June does seem to be a slow month. So perhaps things will pick up in July! Here's hoping (and praying..)

Today I did have some good sightings: a black Leaf Fish, a yellow Leaf Fish, a Hairy Triton shell with the operculum still intact and a Peacock Flounder! woohoo!
Not the prettiest creature ever, but I do find them fascinating. (I also uploaded a short video of this fish being bashed around by the waves...look for octopigirl7 on youtube..)

The Turban shell with its operculum still working....the operculum can snap open and shut to protect the animal inside the shell.
 I hardly ever see 4 yellow tail coris in one frame...but here they are! The one at the bottom is apparently somewhat older, as it has begun to have the adult coloration (see the adult below.)
Yellow Leaf Fish, hiding in a cleft in the rocks.
 A ballet of Moorish Idols. They are so graceful when swimming...
 No swim would be complete without the Brighteye Chromis.  So cute.
 I have been forgetting to memorialize the Christmas Wrasse. They are always around but also always fast.

A Cone shell hiding in the rocks.

What I think is a Crown of Thorns starfish. These are not popular on the reef, as they terrorize and eat practically everything.

Spotfin Scorpion Fish hiding under a rock.

See the flounder?! I didn't at first.
 You can see the circles on its skin a little better in this photo.

And in the photo to the right, the fish had scooched down in the sand, throwing some on its back for better camouflage! I think it succeeded, don't you?
A nice Hairy Triton with the operculum (in this case, a dark colored one) still protecting it. See part of the animal in the channel to the left.

 Two Honu today. And 3 seals!
 A Humu. Nice fish....quite regularly seen on the reef, so sometimes I forget about them. 

 Damsels with needlefish, near the rocks dividing the shallow side from the deep.
 Morning clouds and palms for Alex.

This is the 2nd time I saw this puffer. Standoffish, but that's ok: I have seen their jaws and you don't want to mess with that mouth!
 Another shell that was pretty. See the other one to the left, more buried in the sand.
 Shrimp-ness! Two orange claws in a hole. I often wondered who makes such a nice round hole in the we know.
 Snowflake Moray Eel.
 Spiny urchin.
 The back of the Spotfin Scorpion fish.
I didn't get a very good picture of this fish...but really was curious what it was! 

 This urchin used remains of another urchin for protection.
 Cute little urchin on top of a rock. It's tough for me to get a good angle on them, as they're on top of a rock.
Whiskers, sleeping on the beach....