Sunday, August 2, 2009

Diving at Lembeh Straits Part 2

Here's the part two of my diving adventure at Lembeh Straits sharing with you more about its coral reef.

Yes, Lembeh is not just pure muck diving with volcanic sand as substrate but there's also spectacular coral reefs!

This pair of Hypselodoris Kanga nudibranch that I saw for my first time during diving is very pretty and it is also a species that can be found in Singapore intertidally.

Among the soft corals, this huge cuttlefish is well camouflaged by coloration.

Another form of camouflage will be by this pipefish looking creature that looks like an integral part of the blue sponge.

I did my first night leisure dive with Chay Hoon to Nudi Falls. And indeed there's a lot of nudis! My favourite shot must be this Phyllidia ocellata nudi that I saw for yet another first time. This nudi can also be found in Singapore waters, though more common subtidally. Interesting there is this fish that poses beside the nudi! That's why I love this shot so much!

Another of the many nudis during the night dive will be this handsome Chromodoris annae.

During night time, lots of critter just come out to "play". Nudi falls is just so stunning, its cliff is colourfully filled with sponges and other encrusting lifeforms.

In addition, there are pretty sea fans growing on its cliff.

Among the sponges and sea squirts on the wall, you can find lots of different life like this red crab.

And at night, the tentacles of the cave coral (Tubastrea sp.) polyps are just happy extended outwards, swaying with the waves.

This night dive could have been 10x better without my motion sickness. I was easily disorientated at night and it was also my 4th dive of the day. The tiredness and my motion sickness caused me to feel horrible underwater and I surfaced earlier than the rest.... to vomit! Sigh. Next time then.

The next day arrived and on the first day dive, my dive instructor who is very good with little critters showed a pair of red commensal shrimps on a six-legged sea star.

We were back to a reefy area and I saw this stunning lobster looking creature. Is it really a lobster?

The most shocking thing about this reef is that the mushroom corals are EVERYWHERE!

On sea whips, my dive instructor slowly checked for any commensals and indeed there is this pair of shrimps living on it. How cool!

Of course, it is very hard for you not to see the numerous cushion stars that littered the dive sites of Lembeh.

There were also giant clams spotted as well like this Fluted giant clam (Tridacna squamosa) that can be commonly found in Singapore as well.

Another clam species that Singapore also has will be this Burrowing giant clam (Tridacna crocea).

Being a sea star freak, I was excited whenever a new seastar species (that I've never seen before) was spotted. This cutey star is a Granulated star (Choriaster granulatus).

But as for me, nothing is as endearing as this pair of Thousand-pores star (Fromia milleporella). This species can vary in colour from brown to brick red.

I spotted this yet another never seen before nudibranch which I am unsure of its id. After searching a while on the internet, this is probably Phyllidiopsis shireenae?

I'm not sure if these are the Neptune's sponge but I am certain they are HUGE! Taller than a human being.

My dive instructor signalled to July and I and with a dive pointer, he tried to lure this pretty Blue ribbon eel (Rhinomuraena quaesita) out. It was really hilarious and entertaining.

Another special critter he found among the seaweed will be this yellow leaf fish. It is very cute in terms of moving around.

Crawling on the sandy substrate will be this unidentified fish.

And finally an underwater pose, signalling the end of my diving adventures. Wonder when will I get to dive again to experience all the wonders of God's creation.

1 comment:

Sean said...

If there is a god, let's hope he'll clean up all the fishing line, trash and nets on the Indonesian reefs!

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