Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Back in the water

I debated about going back in the water. Diseases aside, I wasn't sure my nose was up to the task, being as how it was broken and all.

I did a wet "dry run" yesterday in the pool and all was fine, even with my snorkel mask. 

So since today was reportedly the last day before another week of big surf and wind, I decided to venture out and into the water.

And I saw one octopus, one scribbled filefish and one flounder! So I was amply paid back for the 1/2 hour drive to the Bay.

 I only spotted this octopus because of the rocks piled outside its unusual den. I was surprised that it was sharing space with 2 urchins, one on each side. I don't know how they avoid getting poked.

 If you look really carefully, you'll see both eyes. One is to the left of the middle red rock.

The octopus only turned dark when I swam past it.
 A bit closer view of the octopus and the urchin.  And now that I'm looking more closely at home, that may be a star fish on the left! Can't really see it well enough to be sure.
I am always grateful to see any octopuses, especially since I hadn't gotten in the ocean since my fall at the end of February.
Unfortunately, I didn't see the Scribbled File fish before it was almost out and away. They are one of the larger file fishes. With a very cool pattern of lines and dots. And a neat tail.

And I hope you can see the little flounder. It was probably about as big as my hand flattened. A small one:
 Above, it has a bit of rainbow on its skin.
 You can see the ridges of its side, and the eyes are near the bottom. The rainbow runs along its other side.
 They have really great camouflage. I only spotted this one because it moved.

Other members of the cast included:
 The Sailfin Tang and Abudefduf. Amazing that similar striping pattern can look so different.

Commensal fishing featuring the Bluefin Trevally and Goatfish.
 Look really closely. You'll see the tiny Cornet fish, about as big as a small pencil.
 The Humu is so pretty. Even when it's spewing sand out of its gills.

The male Bird Wrasse

 And an operculum. I really wanted to pick it up and take it home, but didn't. I'm trying to be good! It's amazing how I can justify a bad action; in this case, it was "No one will know!"
 This poor urchin was really overloaded with rocks and shells for protection. You can barely see the animal.

This Porcupine Puffer doesn't need rocks for protection. It has big spines.
 I won't ever tire of seeing these pretty colored Picasso Trigger fish, even from above.

More flounder shots, with rainbow from the light above.

 This little star fish wiggled along the bottom. I think it was missing a leg.
Very glad for traffic that behaved, both coming and going. And for all God's cool creatures.

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