Dive Details

Location

Date

Saturday 16 July 2016

Time

2:49pm - 4:24pm

Details

Mike, Charlie, Duncan, and I jumped in at The Steps. I had to be a little careful getting in as I had 8 stitches on the back of my right knee from having a melanoma removed. After getting in safely, we descended to the sand line and headed along the sand line towards The Leap. Visibility was only 3 to 5 metres and the temperature was around 18íC. There was quite a lot of surge.

We swam along the sand line until we reached the rock that used to have the white honeycomb sponge (before the storm) and headed up to the rock where "Di" and "Mikhail", pot-bellied seahorses, used to be. They haven't returned. I then looked around the adjacent rock for "Mel", the black painted angler, but couldn't find it.

We headed back to the sand line and slowly made our way to Diversity Rock. The going was a little tough due to the incoming tide. At Diversity Rock I found the female pygmy pipehorse but was not able to any of the seahorses. I wonder if they will come back or if a new group will colonise the area. While we were photographing the pygmy pipehorse another group of divers swam right through the middle of us with just a couple of the group avoiding us. What are these dive guides thinking?

Just down from Diversity Rock, Charlie spotted a tiny juvenile pygmy pipehorse. It kept letting go and floating in the surge.

I headed up along the top of the reef to High Pygmy Rock. The amount of sand movement in the area is amazing. That was some storm. As I approached High Pygmy Rock I came across a weedy seadragon and then bumped into Charlie and Duncan heading back to the exit. They indicated they'd seen two other weedies. I didn't find any pygmy pipehorses on High Pygmy Rock or the surrounding rocks.

I headed back to Diversity Rock along the top of the reef swimming past the rock where the basket star used to be. Back at Diversity Rock I found a small male pygmy pipehorse 4 or 5 centimetres up the rock from the female. I like looked for more but couldn't find any.

I headed towards the rock where the other seahorses had been. On the way I spotted a pair of reaper cuttlefish. It must be breeding season as I rarely see two together. I had another look for "Mel", the black painted angler but still couldn't find her.

I swam to the boulders, did my safety stop and exited at The Steps. Just below the exit I found a weight pocket which I picked up. It made the exit a little more tricky with the swell but I got out eventually and didn't hurt my stitches.

Buddy

Mike Scotland, Charlie Elliot, Duncan Graham

Seas

Surgy

Visibility

3 to 5 metres

Duration

94 minutes

Maximum depth

14.6 m

Average depth

11.7 m

Water temperature

17.6°C

                                       

Dive Profile from Citizen Hyper Aqualand

Tides at Botany Bay AEST

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

High

5:30am

1.27m

Low

11:15am

0.59m

High

5:56pm

1.65m

Camera gear

Camera

Nikon D7000

Lens

Nikon AF Micro-Nikkor 60mm f/2.8D

Housing

Ikelite 6801.70

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.


Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016071601). 13.4 m.
 

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016071601). 13.3 m.
 

Nudibranch, Jorunna sp. 13.1 m.
 

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016061401). 13.2 m.
 

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016061401). 13.3 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016071602). 13.1 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016071602). 13.1 m.
 

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri, (IL2016071602). 12.9 m.
 

Reaper cuttlefish, Sepia mestus. 12.5 m.
 

Reaper cuttlefish, Sepia mestus. 12.5 m.
 

Reaper cuttlefish, Sepia mestus. 12.9 m.
 

Reaper cuttlefish, Sepia mestus. 13.3 m.
 

Reaper cuttlefish, Sepia mestus. 13.1 m.
 

Reaper cuttlefish, Sepia mestus. 13.4 m.
 

Port Jackson shark, Heterodontus portusjacksoni. 9.2 m.