Monday, March 31, 2008

Weekends = Diving

If you're looking for me on a weekend, you'd better be looking underwater, as that's where I'll be if I have anything to say about it. I was supposed to take Inga from Germany out on a dive Saturday morning, but she came down with a cold, so Zandra was the only one that showed up. Not a problem, as long as I can get wet I'm happy. Here is a shot of Zandra hovering above me at Lau Lau. One of my favorite things to do at Lau Lau is to go swimming through all the little tunnels and caves that are tucked under the rocks and coral. I always enjoy seeing the light shining through at the other end. As I disappeared into a black hole I was wondering if Zandra would follow me in or not. I looked back several times as it's a fairly long tunnel, but I never saw her behind me. Sure enough when I poked out the other end I looked over and she was swimming parallel to the tunnel on the outside. I can't say as I blame her, it was pretty dark in there.
Now that I have my camera back with me again, I'm always looking for what I think would make an interesting picture, or something from a different angle or vantage point. There are a lot of factors underwater that can throw you a curve ball though, such as the visibility, the amount of sediment in the water, the use of flash, and on and on. The great thing about using a digital camera is that you can just snap away and try anything you want, then just delete the pics that didn't turn out the way you wanted.
As we were heading back toward the rope, I dropped into a little sand finger and there was this gorgeous Talpa cowrie just sitting there glowing. It must have just been killed and eaten the night before because the shell was in perfect condition, not a scratch on it. So when Zandra came through I was waiting to see if she'd spot it, she didn't. I tried pointing it out to her, and she still didn't seem to see it, I finally had to take it and put it in her hand. Maybe your eyes need to be trained to spot shells, but they just seem to jump out at me when I'm down there.
As we were swimming out on our dive I looked on the rock that I found the little bubble shells on the week before and sure enough, there were 3 of them crawling around on it. I saw these two just sitting still in one spot, and didn't really think much of it until we came back on the way out.
That's when I spotted this little egg ribbon that the bubble shell nudibranchs had been laying when I saw them earlier. It was very, very tiny but when I blew the picture up you could definitely see the individual little egg strings that made up the egg ribbon. The bubble shells are called Haminoea cymbalum, and evidently this is the season for them, so try to make sure you don't crush and kill them when getting in and out of the water, they like hanging out in the shallows on rocks.

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