Dive Details



Monday 13 November 2017


12:09pm - 1:32pm


I was meant to be working today but found out yesterday that I was not needed. Jeroen was available for a dive so we agreed on The Leap. The forecast suggested a slight swell but it looked a lot bigger although we had no problems with the low platform due to the tide being low. As I was trying to zip up my wetsuit I broke the zipper. We managed to close most of it and Jeroen had some gaffer tape whcih we wrapped around my arm to try to keep it closed.

We jumped in from the low platform and surface swam out before descending. We swam at around 30° to the sand line arriving just to the south east of Lucy and Bob Rock. Visibility was around 10 metres and water temperature was around 18°C. It was lucky it was warmer due to the gap in my wetsuit zipper. There was a gentle surge and the tidal current was noticeable. We turned left and headed towards The Steps.

We swam past Seahorse Rock and on to the flat sponge covered rocks. I found a male weedy seadragon with eggs under the overhang. It was not the male with the damage to his head. This one had relatively new eggs. I took the usual head and flank shots and looked around for the male with the damaged head. He was in the gap between the two flat rocks. His head appears to be healing. He no longer has any eggs.

We continued on to Southern Cross Rock. I wasn't going to look for pygmies there but they were so tempting. We stopped for a short time and I found 3 males and a female.

We headed to Seadragon Alley and I found a weedy right near the start, a male with eggs. His eggs were a bit older and some may have hatched. There was some algae on them. A little farther along I found another weedy, another male, I think, but no eggs.

At the end of Seadragon Alley I looked for the two pygmies on the rock with the green hand sponges. The male was exactly where he'd been last time and then I looked for the female where I last saw her. I found a spider crab there first and then I found the female hidden behind the sponge.

We swam on to the red widebody pipefish and I pointed them put to Jeroen. He was there when Graham had asked me to find them back in February so he was quite thrilled to actually see a pair. I looked around for the great seahorse eventually finding her near The Leap end of the rock she's usually on. I pointed her out to Jeroen.

We went a little higher up from the sand line as we swam to Big Rock. I wanted to find the pygmy that Roney had shown me a couple of weeks ago. I found the rock but could not find the pygmy. While I was looking I found two others: a tiny juvenile female and a large female. I could not see the male anywhere.

We swam on to Big Rock and I saw one of the new yellow male pygmy immediately. There was a pink female with it. Probably the same female I saw near him on Saturday. The two were hanging on to the same alga. I then found the dark male from Saturday and the small pink female with him. I went down to my red male pygmy and also found his partner. Jeroen pointed out Okenia mellita which we'd seen for the last few days. I tried to find Roney's male pygmy or its partner but could not find them.

We were both getting low on air so we took off towards The Steps. Just before Little Big Rock I spotted a Nembrotha purpureolineata nudibranch. I pointed out the orange painted angler and the salmon red-fingered angler nearby.

We then headed for the boulders. On the way we spotted a large ray and then I spotted another weedy seadragon, a male without eggs. At the boulders we ascended to 5 metres before starting our safety stops while we swam to Split Rock. We stopped at Split Rock to finish our safety stops before swimming underwater to the exit. It was an easy exit due to the low tide.


Jeroen van Meenen


Some surge


5 to 8 metres


82 minutes

Maximum depth

20.6 m

Average depth

13.7 m

Water temperature



Dive Profile from Citizen Hyper Aqualand

Tides at Botany Bay AEDT

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










Camera gear


Nikon D500


Nikon AF-S Micro Nikkor 60mm f/2.8G ED


Ikelite 6812.5

Lens port

Ikelite Flat Port 5502.41


2 x Ikelite SubStrobe DS161


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.

Juvenile Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 12.1 m.

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 12.2 m.

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 12.3 m.

Pair of Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 11.8 m.

Pair of Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 12.1 m.

Female Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 12 m.

Male Sydney pygmy pipehorse, Idiotropiscis lumnitzeri. 11.8 m.

Nudibranch, Okenia mellita. 12.3 m.

Red-fingered angler, Porophryne erythrodactylus. 11.4 m.