Dive Details



Sunday 21 January 2018


8:39am - 10:16am


Jeroen joined us for our dive at The Leap today. This would be a quick dive as I needed to be home in time to go out again.

We got in from the low platform and swam out on the surface before descending. We swam at around 30°C towards the sand line. The incoming tidal current was quite strong so we ended up at Ian's Pygmy Rock. There was still a lot of kelp along the sand line. The visibility was between 5 and 10 metres and the surge was only gentle. The water temperature was around 21°C. We turned left and headed towards The Steps.

I had swum past Seahorse Rock when Mike called me back. He'd found a pygmy pipehorse on a rock behind Seahorse Rock.

We swam on to the flat rocks with sponges and there were three weedy seadragons under the overhang: one male (the one whose head had been damage) with new eggs, another male with older eggs and a female. I swam in under the overhang to take photographs of the males. Mike and Jeroen did the same. By the time we'd finished I couldn't find the female. I swam around and eventually found her between the two flat rocks. We had spent so much time here that Mike (who was diving on air) had to ascend to avoid deco. Jeroen and I continued without him.

I arrived at Southern Cross Rock first. There was a weedy seadragon out on the sand in front of Southern Cross Rock. I took some photographs of it first before looking for pygmy pipehorses on the side of the rock. I didn't find any of the 3 that of been there of late. I swam to the top of the rock and found the black painted anglerfish in a sponge. I pointed it out to Jeroen and then had one more look for pygmy pipehorses. I found one in an algae on top of the rock rather than on the side.

I swam on to Seadragon Alley and spotted another weedy seadragon at the start. I looked for the juvenile pygmy pipehorse on one of the first rocks but couldn't find it.

I swam to the end of Seadragon Alley and looked for the pygmy pipehorses on the rock with the sponges. The male was in the same spot he's been for some time. I was expecting the female to be nearby as they had been together yesterday. I instead found her down near the end of the rock where she has been previously. She must have moved back there after mating. When Jeroen caught up I pointed out the pygmies.

I swam on a short way and looked for the red Stigmatopora sp. pipefish. I couldn't find any at all. I will need to spend some time looking around here. I also couldn't find the great seahorse. Someone else had found her very low down near the sand.

I continued on towards Big Rock and stopped at the rock with the four pygmy pipehorses. I found the red male straight away. I then found the pink female and one of the juveniles. Jeroen caught up and I showed him the pygmies.

I swam on to Big Rock. I found the male pygmy pipehorse on Big Rock near the single sea tulip. I pointed the pygmy out to Jeroen when he swam up. I then had a hunt around the area for the white/pink red fingered anglerfish but I still could not find it. I found the black anglerfish on the substrate below the rock below Hand Rock.

We swam on towards New Basket Star Rock. As we were swimming over a rock I spotted a pygmy pipehorse moving around so I stopped to take photos.

The basket star was on its usual rock and then I checked the alga on the sand for the red Stigmatopora pipefish. It was still there. I had seen it yesterday but it is still comforting to see it again.

We continued on to Little Big Rock. I found the male pygmy pipehorse on the rock where the anglerfishes had been. Mike told me later that he'd also seen the female but as we were short on time I didn't have time to look more thoroughly.

We followed the sand line towards the other red pipefish. I initially couldn't find the orange red-fingered anglerfish on the rock I'd seen it yesterday and then I saw it on the side of the rock. I pointed it out to Jeroen before we swam on. I spotted the eggs the Nembrotha purpureolineata was laying yesterday but not the nudibranch itself. The red pipefish were not at the alga where they have been for the last few months but I didn't have time to look around the area.

We headed for the boulders and ascended to 5 metres as we started our safety stop on our way to Split Rock. We finished our safety stops and swam to the exit. The exit was easy. As we were getting out I could see Mike heading up the stairs.


Mike Scotland, Jeroen van Meenen




5 to 10 metres


96 minutes

Maximum depth

21.1 m

Average depth

15.3 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.