Dive Details


Logged dive number



Saturday 18 January 2020


12:53pm - 3:00pm


Josh Moloney


Strong current and surge an times


3 to 5 metres


127 minutes

Surface interval

6 days 2:11 (days hh:mm)

Maximum depth

13.4 m

Average depth

10.5 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.














Josh joined me for my dive today at The Monument. Today was my only chance to dive on the weekend and I wanted to visit the seahorses here. It was also a little rougher farther out of the bay.

We walked around to the protected area two thirds of the way to The Steps. It looked a bit rough but I assured Josh that it looks way rougher than it is. We waded out. I went ahead so Josh could follow. We go to the edge of the shelf and put our fins on. Once we were ready we descended.

We swam to the sand line. The visibility was only around 5 metres with a lot of particulate matter in the water. The water temperature was just under 22°C. There was quite a bit of surge and the current was quite strong. We turned right and headed towards Sutherland Point.

We swam along the sand line. I had one eye on the sand line looking for Weedy Seadragons and the other on the rocks looking for anglerfish. At Block Rock I spotted a Weedy Seadragon just in from the sand line. I checked out the rocks around Block Rock but found nothing else of interest.

We continued to the wall. I went on ahead to Pygmy Playground and started looking for pygmies on the first square rock. While I was looking I noticed Josh signalling me with his torch. I swam back to him at the start of the wall. The current was strong and it was hard work swimming against it. He'd spotted an Okenia mellita nudibranch.

We headed to Pygmy Playground. I looked on the square rock and found the white male pygmy pipehorse. I took some photographs and pointed it out to Josh. I then went to the shelf and after much searching I spotted a golden male pygmy pipehorse on the side of the shelf. I looked for others but couldn't find any. The surge made searching and photography difficult. Once Josh had finished with the white pygmy I pointed out the golden one and went back to the square rock to look for others. I spotted a cryptic female.

I looked around the kelp at the base of the wall for Weedy Seadragons but found none.

We swam up and over the wall to the area above the wall. I was looking for seahorses or anglerfishes when I spotted a Weedy Seadragon on the sand. It had a weird growth on its head.

We started along the reef. I was looking for the orange Red-fingered Anglerfish that Greg and I had seen last Saturday. I looked on the same rock and initially didn't see it. Then I spotted it behind a purple sponge. I took some photographs and pointed it out to Josh.

We slowly made our way to Split Rock. I spotted a Reaper Cuttlefish along the way. I swam up to the crevice above it to look for the Upside-down Pipefish. There seemed to be more mysids that last Saturday. There was also more particulate matter in the water and I could barely see into the crevice. I was not able to see the Upside-down Pipefish.

We continued along the reef. I looked on the rock with the orange encrusting sponges for the orange Red-fingered Anglerfish I'd seen last Saturday. It was still there. I took some photographs and pointed it out to Josh.

I swam to the rock where the Dendronephthya had been. I looked for the pair of pygmy pipehorses there but could not spot them. Josh swam up while I was looking. I looked on the next rock but one for the grey Red-fingered Anglerfish but could not see it. I couldn't find it on any of the surrounding rocks, either.

We started to head towards Valley of the Pygmies. I stayed low and found a Weedy Seadragon on the way.

At Valley of the Pygmies, I looked on The Castle for the white female pygmy pipehorse I've seen there on the last few dives. I instead found two other white pygmies: a male and a female. I took photographs of them and pointed them out to Josh. I looked around for the original white female and her partner. I couldn't find them.

Josh indicated he had to go so I started to swim with him along the base of the NW-SE Wall to show him the way. I got to the middle rock of the three rocks at the base of the wall and spotted a grey Red-fingered Anglerfish. I called Josh back so he could take a few quick photographs and then he took off.

I was going to go with Josh but he left in such a hurry I wouldn't have been able to keep up. I decided to head back to The Castle and look for the original white female. I searched and searched and couldn't find her until I spotted her tail wrapped around a purple sponge. She was sort of hiding but was in a good position for photography. I looked for the male but could not see it.

I headed back to the base of the NW-SE Wall to the second rock and the grey anglerfish. It was on the move. I took some more photographs as it walked down the side of the rock.

I swam along the base of the wall and then up at the end and cut across to the corner. I looked for Red-fingered Anglerfish along the way in the spots I have previously seen them but didn't find any.

I headed past the large Carijoa covered rock and on to the shelf at the start of the East-West Wall. I looked for the orange Red-fingered Anglerfish that I'd seen on my last two dives but it wasn't there. I checked out the nearby rocks to no avail.

I swam to the area where the Pot-bellied Seahorse are along the base of the wall. I looked on the rock with the white honeycomb sponge and orange finger sponge but there were no seahorses there. I then spent around 20 minutes swimming around the area checking out every sponge but could not find any of the seahorses. There was a lot of kelp about. I started looking in the kelp near their main rock when I spotted "Gracie" in the kelp. The kelp was not attached and I was worried about the kelp being washed away with her on it. I moved the kelp to beside the rock and she swam over to the sponges. I did another sweep of the area but did not find any of the males.

I ascended the wall and to 5 metres and started my safety stop as I swam west along the top of the wall. When I came to the break in the kelp I turned south and headed for the beach. I continued south until it was too shallow and I waded out over the rocks.