Dive Details


Logged dive number



Saturday 14 March 2020


9:15am - 11:09am


Thibault Serot, Nicolas Remy


Slight current and some surge


3 to 10 metres


114 minutes

Surface interval

2 days 22:46 (days hh:mm)

Maximum depth

12.8 m

Average depth

10.4 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.














We had planned to do a long (2-3 hours) dive at The Leap today but the forecast changed predicting a large swell by 9am and getting larger by noon. We thought it would be safer to dive The Monument which is always a good dive, anyway.

Cody pulled out of the dive, as did Lena but Nicolas' friend Thibault joined us.

We geared up and walked down to the water and along the rocks to my favourite entry point: the gentle slope to the platform. The tide was still quite low so we were able to wade out all the way to the edge of the platform. When we were ready we descended and swam to the sand line. The visibility was excellent at around 10 metres. The water temperature was between 18 and 19°C. There was a slight current with the incoming tide and the surge was gentle. We turned left and headed towards Sutherland Point.

We drifted along the sand line to Block Rock. I looked on the rock on the sand like with the Carijoa colonies for the pygmy pipehorses I have seen there previously, including the female I saw on Tuesday. I found none.

We continued along the sand line to the wall and then along the wall to Pygmy Playground. I looked on the side of the square rock and found the pinkish male pygmy and the whiteish female. I took some photographs but never checked them on the camera and only realised later that my strobes were not turned on properly. I pointed out the pygmies to Thibault and Nicolas and then looked on top of the rock for the pygmies John had mentioned. I found a small cryptic female. It was at this point I realised my right strobe was not switched on. I pointed out the 3rd pygmy to the others and then moved to the ledge.

I looked on the ledge in Pygmy Playground for more pygmies but found none. I then looked around the area for seahorses but found none.

We drifted out onto the kelp and I looked for Weedy Seadragons. I didn't see any here last Tuesday but I had seen one two weeks ago. I wasn't able to find one today.

We swam up the reef away from the sand line. I was looking on the rocks when I spotted a small male. It was as I was photographing it I realised what had really gone wrong with my strobes. The TTL switch on my left (main) strobe had been bumped to full manual power. Once I fixed this I was able to get some decent shots.

We headed along the reef to Split Rock. I looked under the ledge above Split Rock and spotted one of the Upside-down Pipefish for a brief time but then it hid. While I was there, PJ, Jackie and Martin swam up. I tried to point out the Upside-Down Pipefish to PJ but as it wasn't visible, he couldn't see it and didn't know what I was trying to show him. I did see a large octopus.

We continued along the reef. I looked for the large orange Red-fingered Anglerfish but couldn't find it. I stopped at the rock where the Dendronephthya colony used to be and then looked on the nearby rock for the small grey Red-fingered Anglerfish I'd first seen on 1 March. I couldn't find it.

I moved on to Four Pygmies Rock and found the two pygmies I'd found there on 1 March: first the female (IL20200301??) and then the male (IL20200301??). I took some photographs and pointed them out to Nicolas and Thibault.

I headed up the reef to the rocks where the well camouflaged Red-fingered Anglerfish had been. It was still in the same spot. I took some photographs and when the others swam up, I pointed it out. While I was waiting for the others I spotted an Umbrella Snail.

We swam down to Valley of the Pygmies. I last saw pygmies on The Castle at the beginning of February but none since. I did a slow sweep of The Castle but still found no pygmies. I then checked the slope. I haven't seen any pygmies on the slope for many months. I then spotted a cryptic female in the area where Reliable Male used to be. I looked for a male and spotted a white one. I'm not sure why I found the cryptic female first. I took some photographs and pointed them out to Nicolas and Thibault.

I wanted to spend some time looking for the seahorses so I told Nicolas and Thibault that I was heading off. I swam by the three rocks at the base of the wall and looked for the grey Red-fingered Anglerfish but couldn't find it.

I continued along the wall and at the end cut up towards the corner. I spotted a Nembrotha purpureolineata nudibranch on the way.

I looked on the large Carijoa covered rock for anglers but found none. I swam over to the shelf at the start of the wall. Two weeks ago I'd spotted a pair of pygmies in the Carijoa and I hoped they were still there. This time I found a white male and a whiteish female. I'll have to check my photographs to see if they are the same ones and changed their colour.

I swam along the base of the wall to the area where the Pot-bellied Seahorses were. I'd seen "Jose" here twice since the storm but had not seen "Tim" and more importantly "Gracie". Without a female, I didn't expect the males would stay around. Today I was not able to find any seahorses at all even after searching for around 10 minutes.

I was getting low on air so I ascended the wall and started my safety stop. I swam along the top of the wall for a bit and then turned south. I kept swimming until it was too shallow and then I waded out over the rocks.