Saturday, December 17, 2016

Birthday Octopuses

A great way to start a birthday is with a birthday song from my husband!  Very nice, very nice. And throughout the day I also received calls and songs from my sister, several friends and texts from folks in colder climes than Hawaii.  I am thankful to live where we do!

And then swimming (in my wetsuit instead of dive skin, because it gets cold when you're in the water for 2 hours in this temperature.)  And finding, eventually, two octopuses.  And a scorpion fish.  And surprising shells.
Octopus #1
Peeking out at me.  This octopus took me forever to find. But very happy I did. This was later in the dive, too, so I had been talking with God, soliciting His help in finding any.  He answered.
Octopus #2
This octopus also saw me immediately, and hunkered down, just peeking out at me.  Both octopuses were young, but smart enough to hide.  Thanks, God!  This 2nd one I saw just as I was about to get out of the water, so even more thankful for the viewing.  I hope no visitors step on it. But I guess if it backed into its den when it saw me, it would do the same if a foot started coming down on it from above.

There were several Snowflake Moray Eels, too.  They are so cute, especially when they look up, trying to threaten and scare me:
Every time I see an eel face, I wonder why it has the 2 tubes for breathing. We would look silly with those.  I can imagine someone dyeing their nose tubes, just as some folks dye their hair. (And yes, I'm one of them...)

A Mitre shell:
This shell does have some ocean gunk on it, but the shell underneath has lovely orange and white coloring.  I'll try to remember to take a photo of the shell I found years ago that shows the colors better.

This shell had a green and whitish crab dragging it around.
This shell was being used by an urchin as protection...I almost tried to "liberate" it, but decided not to take the chance.  Those spines are serious!

Also found two Cowry shells, being all close in their hiding spots:
A photo of an so-far unknown to me shell:

And finishing the shell pix for this dive on Dec 16 is the small Drupe:
I enjoy the challenge of taking these pictures, as the waves mash me around.  We did have a couple of days without much wind and tamed waves, but yesterday was not one of those days!  In fact, I thought I was losing my mind: the waves were coming so strongly from the right hand side that it felt as if the current, going left to right, had reversed.  Now that would be weird...I got so accustomed to the regular direction of the current that I was asking myself if I was losing my mind.

And to celebrate the final week of relaxing at home before I start working, I counted my collection of operculum: 1800!  Yeah, that's a lot.  But as I counted them, all placed out on the Christmas table cloth, I realized that many of them are very small, so they take up not as much space as one might think.
I was thinking I was almost done in showing you all what I found, but then looked at my list of photos and realized I hadn't reported the Scorpion Fish.  Pretty well hidden, too, I think:
Very much the same color as the rocks it's resting on.  Wow, these guys really do have the camouflage down.  It is sadly tough to get a photo of their eyes...
And in the Beautiful Fish category, seven Moorish Idols made an appearance, for once in one photo!

Cannot remember if I told you all what the other name is for the Spanish Dancer: Hexibranchus Sanguineus.  Try saying that 3 times fast.
And last in the fish category, a very small lizard fish:
Awww, cute, but still with sharp teeth.
And palms for my sweetheart, who made my birthday great:

Thanks, Alex!

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