Dive Details

Location

Date

Wednesday 9 March 2016

Time

8:27am - 10:05am

Details

While there was still an easterly swell it was only meant to be 1.3m so conditions should be better than Sunday. It was less than an hour before a big high tide so we had to slide down the wall to get in. The surface was quite choppy and visibility here was poor. We descended and swam at around 30° to the sand line. When we arrived to visibility was probably a little over 5 metres, the surge was still there but less than Sunday and it was around 18°.

We turned left and swam along the sand line towards The Steps. I had a brief look for the Miamira magnifica nudibranch but didn't see it. As we swam past Seahorse Rock I looked for the robust ghostpipefish but I don't think it's there any longer.

Mike and Bob got ahead of me but as I caught up to them just past Southern Cross Rock, Mike was photographing a bearded leatherjacket. I assume this is the same one that Peter Lightowler videoed on Saturday. I had never seen one before and it was quite odd looking. It was also larger than I expected.

Just past the bearded leatherjacket and before Seadragon Alley we saw the female weedy seadragon with the cut first appendage (PT2013122201). We saw 4 more weedy seadragons in Seadragon Alley: a male (PT2014030803), PT2015091101, PT2015122201, PT2015051001.

I got ahead of Mike and Bob. Between Seadragon Alley and Big Rock I saw another weedy seadragon, it was beloved female with the deformed body (PT2014030901). After Big Rock I looked for the robust ghostpipefish but did not find them. I then swam up to High Pygmy Rock.

At High Pygmy Rock I found the female pygmy pipehorse (IL2015072601) first. I then found the male (IL2016021002) and finally the new female (IL2016022101). While I was there Mike and Bob swam up. Mike showed me a photograph on his camera of a robust ghostpipefish he'd seen just after Big Rock. I showed him the three pygmies and then headed back to the sand line to look again for the ghostpipefish. I was still unsuccessful. I did find another male weedy (PT2014091301).

I swam along the sand line, past the basket star and on to Diversity Rock. "Daniel" was in the sea tulips. "Arnold" was on the sponge on top of Diversity Rock. "Noel" was in the sponges on the rock behind Diversity Rock. It took me some time to find "Rosie" but I eventually found her on the large rock behind and to the left of Diversity Rock. I then looked for pygmy pipehorses but found only the small whitish male. The surge made photography of the seahorses and pygmy pipehorse quite difficult.

I swam on to the other seahorses and found both "Di" and "Mikhail" at the low end of their rock. Again the surge was quite strong.

I headed for the boulders and saw a weedy seadragon (PT2014020902) in the kelp. I descended quickly to get some photos and then continued on my way the the boulders. I did my safety stop and exited at The Steps.

Buddy

Mike Scotland, Bob

Seas

Surgy

Visibility

3 to 5 metres

Duration

98 minutes

Maximum depth

21.8 m

Average depth

14.4 m

Water temperature

17.7°C

                                       

Dive Profile from Citizen Hyper Aqualand

Tides at Botany Bay AEDT

Note that tides at dive site may vary from above location.

Low

2:59am

0.28m

High

9:19am

1.90m

Low

3:44pm

0.16m

High

9:49pm

1.70m

Camera gear

Camera

Nikon D300

Lens

Nikon AF Micro-Nikkor 60mm f/2.8D

Housing

Ikelite 6812.3

Lens port

Ikelite Flat Port 5502.41

Strobe

2 x Ikelite SubStrobe DS161

Photographs


Depth information, where present, indicates the depth of the camera when the photograph was taken and can be used to approximate the depth of the subject.


Bearded leatherjacket, Anacanthus barbatus. 19.1 m.
 

Bearded leatherjacket, Anacanthus barbatus. 19.4 m.
 

Bearded leatherjacket, Anacanthus barbatus. 19.3 m.
 

Weedy seadragon, Phyllopteryx taeniolatus, (PT2015122201). 18.1 m.
 

Weedy seadragon, Phyllopteryx taeniolatus, (PT2015122201). 18.3 m.
 

Weedy seadragon, Phyllopteryx taeniolatus, (PT2015051001). 17.5 m.
 

Giant cuttlefish, Sepia apama. 17.4 m.
 

Weedy seadragon, Phyllopteryx taeniolatus, (PT2014030901). 16.3 m.
 

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2015072601). 13.4 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016021002). 13.2 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016021002). 13.1 m.
 

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016022101). 12.9 m.
 

Basket star, Astrosierra amblyconus. 14.6 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Daniel"). 13.6 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Arnold"). 13.2 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Arnold"). 13.3 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Noel"). 13.3 m.
 

Female pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Rosie"). 12.8 m.
 

Female pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Rosie"). 13 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016022901). 13.5 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016022901). 13.5 m.
 

Female pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Di"). 11.2 m.
 

Female pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Di"). 11.1 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Mikhail"). 11.2 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Mikhail"). 11.3 m.
 

Male pot-bellied seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis, ("Mikhail"). 11.4 m.