dancingfish news

Sun, January 06, 2008

Lembeh 2007 Favorite of the Day, January 6th, 2008    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

There are numerous fish in the world known as batfish. Strange red-lipped batfish and other varieties that walk on the bottom, as well as the spadefish types. The spadefish types are really beautiful when they are juveniles, sometimes having ultra elongated shapes and vivid colors. Even as a juvenile, a pinnate batfish can be several feet in height, and are usually jet black with a neon orange border when very young. This juvenile was tiny, only an inch or so tall at most, and swam constantly in circles, as the juvies typically do. I’ve wanted a good photo of one of these for ages, but the ones I’ve seen before are typically tucked in a crevice, and are so large that it’s difficult to get a good framing without too much water between. Because this one was tiny and out in the open, it was much easier to photograph, although even so, the constant movement made it hard to get the right perspective.

batfish

14:25:31

Sun, December 30, 2007

Lembeh 2007 Favorite of the Day, December 30, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

We encountered many juvenile cuttlefish on this trip to Lembeh, in all different sizes. This was a juvie who was curious about me, but trying to stay a little hidden next to some lavendar colored algae.

Juvie cuttle

12:31:43

Sun, December 23, 2007

Lembeh 2007 Favorite of the Day, December 23, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

It was hard for me to choose my first favorite of the day from this trip. I decided to go with this harlequin shrimp, since I’ve seen harlequins so rarely in the past. I have seen them deep within a cauliflower coral in Kona. I saw a beautiful pair in Papua New Guinea. And I saw a pair in Thailand at Richeliu Rock. We’d heard there was a pair at a dive site in Lembeh Strait, so we talked to the guides and made plans to go there. We saw them on two different dives on this site. The first time, the pair was walking around a small cluster of coral, a cleaning station type area. That is when I took this photo. I believe they were hunting for sea stars, their favorite food. The second time, a few days later, they were away from the coral and hiding in some mucky sponges, along with a red sea star that they were eating, so they had been successful in their hunt. They are beautiful shrimp.

harlequin shrimp

14:10:31

Sat, December 08, 2007

Lembeh 2007 Gallery and Slideshows    [ Diving,Photography,Travel,Website updates ]

I have now posted the gallery for the 2007 Lembeh Strait trip:

Gallery

Also on that page are PC (EXE) and Mac (Flash) versions of a multimedia slideshow.

Enjoy!

Shrimp

08:09:44

Fri, November 02, 2007

Blue Ring Octopus    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Another couple of great dives here in Lembeh. Still jetlagged, so taking it easy the first couple of days. Once again, one dive with film and one with digital. We were lucky enough to encounter a blue ring octopus on the first dive of the day, at Tanda Rusa.

Blue Ring

Blue Ring 2

In this photo, the blue ring has just caught something to eat and is eating it:
Blue Ring eating

And we had a few other critters on this dive as well..

A snake eel with a cleaner shrimp:
Snake Eel

A juvenile cuttlefish:
Juvenile Cuttlefish

A fingered dragonet:
dragonet

A cool cowrie:
Cowrie

And some lovely nudibranchs:
Nudi

A very nice dive…

05:25:41

Thu, November 01, 2007

Live from Lembeh, 2007 version..    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

The first day of diving is done. I did two dives, one with film and one with digital. From the digital dive (at Teluk Kembahu 3), I have a few photos to share:
Jellyfish:
Jelly
Lysiosquilla mantis shrimp
Mantis
A dancing flambouyant cuttlefish:
Flambo
The strange Ambon scorpionfish:
Ambon
And of course, the mimic octopus:
Mimic

Mimic Faceoff

Enjoy!

13:17:42

Sun, October 21, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, October 21, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

I have a double-whammy for everyone today. First, because I go to Indonesia next week and won’t be posting the favorites while I’m gone, and second, because these will probably be my last favorites postings for this Solomons trip, and I still have several of my favorites that I haven’t posted! Anyway, the first photo is of a beautiful corallimorph, and if you look closely, you can see a small transparent shrimp sitting on the left side:
corallimorph

The second photo was taken of a small ghostgoby that lives around these bubble corals. A pretty fish on a pretty background, what more could I ask for?
ghostgoby

I will try to post some photos from the road… Expect the weird and wacky!

14:17:12

Sun, October 07, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, October 7, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

This guy is a real clown. He’s a Freckle Face Blenny. Comical face, funny behaviors. And just to make sure the joke is on you, he lives in a place where it’s nearly impossible to shoot him. That would be the shallow surge zone, typically in a rock shelf area.

This particular dive we dubbed the “washing machine dive”, because we had incredible cross, up and down currents along the wall where we were. For a good part of the dive, we had to swim through our own bubbles, because they wouldn’t float upward! Anyway, Sam on the Bilikiki had been looking for a freckle face blenny for me, and he indicated that there was one on top of the 4 foot shelf where all this water was focusing its energy. I thought, “You have got to be kidding!”. But I followed him up, and proceeded to get zipped back and forth in the surge as Sam looked for blennies in their holes. I found a likely subject and attempted my few shots. With manual focus. This photo is the result. You can see the force of the surge in his face, as his normally upright cirri are bent sideways by the water. And I’m sure he was laughing at me the whole time..

Blenny

16:34:07

Fri, September 21, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, September 21, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Another of my wide angle shots from Mary Island. There is frequently a large school of barracuda there, along with the ubiquitous jacks.

barracuda

17:42:15

Sat, September 08, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, September 8, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Hmmm, it’s Saturday. Must be time for a clownfish!

clown

14:12:18

Sun, August 26, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, August 26, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Sometimes, anemones don’t really look like anemones. This shrimp, a Periclimenes brevicarpalis, also known as a popcorn shrimp, lives in an anemone known as an adhesive anemone. The tentacles on the anemone are very short, giving its surface a textural look almost like coarse velvet. This shrimp and anemone are regular friends on the reef.

Popcorn Shrimp

14:14:14

Sun, August 19, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, August 19, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

This is a Clark’s Anemonefish. I like this photo because the fish was being shy and coy.

Anemonefish

09:41:19

Sat, July 21, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, July 21, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Here’s another shot that has been incredibly popular on Flickr for unknown reasons… This one was taken in Leru Cut, but rather than the traditional view of looking out the front of the cut, this is in the back of the cut, looking straight up at the pool overhead that is in the mangroves. The sun was streaming down and the light was very pretty.

Leru

11:45:24

Sun, July 15, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, July 15, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Some folks on Flickr seemed to enjoy this photo, so I am posting it as a favorite of the day here. From Barracuda Point, Mary Island.

Jacks

08:10:02

Sat, July 07, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, July 7, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Being a macro fanatic, I really enjoy photographing small crustaceans, such as this little shrimp, who is sitting in a mushroom coral.

Shrimp

15:49:20

Sun, July 01, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, July 1, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

I love to take photos of sunbursts, though they are somewhat difficult to get right with digital cameras. DSLRs have come a long way in the last few years, and my D2X does a better job with them than my old D100. On this day at Mary Island, the water was uncharacteristically glasslike and the sunlight was streaming through the water, so I worked at capturing the large schools of jacks with the sun.

Jacks

10:36:09

Sat, June 23, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, June 23, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

See anything? Stonefish just look like rubble. This is a closeup of the face of a stonefish. And about what I was looking at when I first found him. I was following a dragonet over the rubbly bottom, when I just noticed the face in the sand, and it was quite startling!
stonefish

21:10:41

Sun, June 17, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, June 17, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

These little catfish school on the reefs in largish groups, moving over the bottom and feeding. I find it amusing to try to get in front of the school and capture their faces as they encounter the strange bubbling photographer in their way.

catfish

10:08:01

Sun, June 10, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, June 10, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Would you believe this is a clam? A tridacna clam, once of several marine species that can grow quite large. Some of the clams have beautiful blue or green colors and patterns and some are almost iridescent. I like to take photo abstracts of these.

Tridacna

09:31:50

Sat, June 02, 2007

Solomons 2006 Favorite of the Day, June 2, 2007    [ Diving,Photography,Travel ]

Here’s another pretty little character. This is a tiny squat lobster, perhaps a half inch in length or so, that lives on a barrel sponge. I’ve heard these called Hairy Crabs, Fairy Crabs and even Sid Vicious crabs :). They camoflauge very well against the sponge, despite their vivid pink and purple coloration. But when you put a little light on them, they almost sparkle.

Sid Vicious

08:24:17

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