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Archive for November, 2011

A perfect hippocampus pontohi

Pregnant Hippocampus Pontohi

I just downloaded the pictures from todays morning dives and am amazed by the beauty of this little Pontohi Pygmy Seahorse that i found at XXX (of course we don’t tell the divsite ;))
It not only has a very cool white-yellow colouration with lots of red on the head and back – it’s also quite big (for a pygmy seahorse), was standing relatively still (for a pontohi) and was pregnant. A very good combination! So since today it is my preferred Pontohi that is around at the moment … there are right now Pontohis at 5 divesites (3 of them with yellow-white ones). Come here to Lembeh and check them out!

Creature Feature: Hairy Frogfish

When Muck Diving Freaks come to Lembeh the Hairy Frogfish is arguably the top candidate on the Critter Whishlist. The Hairy Frogfish is the hairy variation of the Striated Frogfish (antennarius striatus or striped frogfish). Even though there is some other species of frogfish with hair to see in Lembeh, the Striated Frogfish is the most impressive one.

It grows relatively big (up to about 20 cm) and can be white, brown, yellow, orange or even black. Besides the stripe pattern and the hair another cool feature of the Hairy Frogfish is the worm shaped lure that it actively uses to attract prey.

Hairy Frogfish can occasionally be found in depths as shallow as 1m – but usually deeper. They normally stay around for a while, but move back deeper after mating. The bigger Frogfish is the female and is usually followed by a smaller male.

 

Classic sites to see the Hairy Frogfish in Lembeh are: Hairball, Teluk Kembahu (TK), Jahir, Aer Bajo, Tandu Rusa and Retak Larry.

Best lens to use: 60mm Macro – but for bigger hairy frogfishes also Wide Angle Lenses can be used.

Best season: The whole year with a peak in August – November

More Info: A good website with more information about Frogfishes is www.frogfish.ch

Housereef Reunion

This week Guido from Italy was our Guest here at NAD Lembeh – and already when he stepped from the Boat he was quite familiar to Serge our Dive Manager. After some minutes they finally figured out, that they know each other from Maldives where Guido had complained, that the 60 minutes Dive time was not enough for Photographers. The Baseleader asked then Serge (who worked as Instructor on Maldives at that time) to take Guido on a housereef dive – and as Serge also has a weakness for long dives they ended beyond 2,5 hours divetime. That was in Winter 2005/2006. So now they met again after 6 Years: And of course they wanted to go for another Housereef Dive – here at NAD Lembeh. They found several Lembeh Seadragons, Bobtail Squid, other Squids, Various Nudibranchs, Baby Estuarine Stonefish, some cool Sponge Carrier Crabs, Skeleton Shrimps, strange Shrimps and many other things. Unfortunately they could not go for another record, as Serge’s torch stopped working after 90 minutes … still a very good Night Dive at NAD Lembeh Housereef.

The Lembeh Formula: Tiny Critters = Great Diving

Today was another fantastic day of diving here at NAD Lembeh. This morning was somthing like the festival of miniatures. On the first dive we had several Baby Painted Frogfish, tiny Soft Coral Shrimp, baby Sawblade Shrimps, Pygmy Goby guarding eggs and a lot of other small things, that make a dive BIG. On the second dive the Mini Creatures just kept coming: A Baby Seahorse, a small Tiger Shrimp, Pygmy Seahorses, Ghostpipe Fish with eggs (Eyes of the Babys visible), juvenile Flamboyant Cuttlefish, dozends of Mini Nudibranchs and … a tiny tiny Hairy Shrimp (about 2mm in size!!). So remember to pack your magnifying glass when you come to Lembeh!

New Eco Friendly 4 Stroke Engines

Eco Friendly Engines in NAD Lembeh

After having tested the Four Stroke Tohatsu Engines for almost 2 months on “Banggai” (one of our dive boats), we now got a second set of them for our bigger boat “Stargazer”. These Engines not only save fuel (which is good for us and for the environment), they also don’t smell, are very low noise and don’t spill oil into the ocean like the classic 2 Strokes do. So we decided to go this eco friendly way and change over our boats one by one to this cleaner system.
After the new low consumption generators, garbage separation, recharging batteries for dive torches, gardening projects and our rainwater collection system (that we are still working on) this is just one more (and not the last) step that we can take to make our resort more eco friendly!

Nudi Bloom

Lesser Janolus Nudibranch in Lembeh

We are having a fantastic week of Muck and Coral diving here in Lembeh at the moment: Many cool Critters like Blue Ringed and hairy Octopus, rare Frogfishes and Ghost Pipefishes … but also a big variety of Nudibranchs these days. The Lesser Janolus in the Picture is just one of them. Some others, that i remember from this week are: A very cool Sagminopteron psychedelicum, Solar Powered Nudis in different variations, several Melibe Nudibranchs (with Shrimps on them), Magical Hypselodoris, Hypselodoris Kanga, Hypselodoris Infucata, Hypselodoris Bullocki, Hypselodoris Bollandi, Glossodoris Astromarginata, Glossodoris Cincta, Glossodoris Rufomarginata, Chromodoris Tinctoria, Chromodoris Sinensis, Chromodoris Preciosa, Chromodoris Kunei, Chromodoris Hintantuensis, Chromodoris Fidelis, Chromodoris Geometrica, Chromodoris Dianae, Chromodoris Aureopurpurea, Chromodoris Annae, Loads of different Ceratosomas & Mexichromis and many many more. Good diving for Nudi Lovers here in Lembeh!

Creature Feature: Tozeuma Shrimp / Sawblade Shrimp

The Tozeuma Shrimp or Sawblade Shrimp is another cool Critter commonly found in the Lembeh Strait. The more attractive one is the Banded Tozeuma Shrimp (tozeuma armatum) which has a beautiful stripe pattern and lives on whip coral and in black coral bushes. It matches the colour of the host. They are sometimes found alone sometimes in groups of up to 5 or more. Depth is usually 15 meters or deeper.

The other type and the more common one is the Ocellated Tozeuma (tozeuma lanceolatum) which can be easily identified by its 2 Eye spots on the side. It can be red, orange, green, yellow or brown and is found in between sponges or algae – usually in 10 meters or deeper.

Both types have a very distictive shape and are suited to be photographed from the side. Ideal lens would be a 60mm (due to the lenght of the shrimp).

Both of them can found found pretty much everywhere in the Lembeh Strait – permitting you have the right dive guide 😉