Whidbey Island Critters

Fish & Invertebrate sightings and descriptions, hosted by resident NWDC ID expert Janna Nichols (nwscubamom).
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K »

Langley Harbor, February 27th dive.
Pacific Stomach Wing - translation of its scientific name. Winged Sea Slug is more flattering name. Shag- Rug nudibranch, I don't know how happy about this name this slug is ... 🙂
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Lagoon Point, March 4th.
It might be common somewhere else, but in all these years, this is the first Pacific Lyre crab I found.
Also green eggs I don't know what critter they belong to.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty- March 6th.
Relaxing Sunday afternoon at favorite Whidbey dive spot with my daughter and few good friends.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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HORNED NUDIBRANCH, Hermissenda crassicornis, comes in two flavors. In most guidebooks these slugs are described as annulated (having rings) on their rhinophores, I found many at Lagoon Point having smooth rhinophores. This species demonstrates a very wide range of both morphological and color variations. Certainly, this makes the accurate identification of these guys difficult. Revision of Eastern Pacific Nudibranchs dealing with the many changes in the world of marine slugs is in the works...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Some other slugs and critters from Lagoon Point,
March 4th dive.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Possession Point Fingers dive. March 9th.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline, March 11th.
The stars are born, and tiny Mosshead warbonnet hiding among the horde of scavenger snails.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Jan: I thought you would be posting pictures of Irish lords today.
Curt :laugh:
Happy to be alive.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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oldsalt wrote: Thu Mar 17, 2022 10:51 am Jan: I thought you would be posting pictures of Irish lords today.
Curt :laugh:
Curt, beer clouded my memory, could not find the lord in the last batch of pictures... Maybe next year :)


Keystone Jetty, March 13th.
The choppy waters did not deter visiting divers, for some it was the fist dip into the ocean after completing pool lessons.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Deception Pass, March 12th dive.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Deception pass, March 12, 2022 dive, the rest of the pixels.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty, March 15th dive.
Lingcod cleaning encounter. It is quite often, when I come across of the service provided by very small Scalyhead sculpins to the largest fish at the jetty.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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More from Keystone Jetty, March 15th dive.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone March 18th dive.
Lingcod still guarding eggs, many of them now empty, I wonder if that sculpin munches on some of the newly hatched youngsters or just resting there. Also Pygmy Rock crab crawled into empty barnacle shell already occupied by Kelp Greenling eggs. Spring seems to be here for the new arrivals...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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The dive gear was drying up, so it was time to introduce it again to the sea. :)
Possession Point Fingers - March 20th. dive
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline, March 24th dive.
My first encounter with marine life was even before I got in the water. Juvenile Giant Ghost Shrimp wandering on the sandy beach. Once under the water - a Butterfly ! Crab that is. :)
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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More from March Skyline dives ...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Deception Pass, March 26th.
Plenty of current, poor visibility and broken focusing light, that was in nutshell the story of this Saturday dive. :(
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Langley Harbor, March 27th.
Finding 15 Sunflower stars on one dive is a very pleasant surprise. Pycnopodia, which ruled here in the harbor in the good old days are very rare sight anywhere these days. Fully grown adults were not among the fifteen, but hopefully, we will see the day when they do mature. I did find one Ochre star wasting, so the disease is still a potential problem.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty, March 29th.
These days, the jetty shallows belong to the Tubesnout love. :)
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Greenbank, March 30th.
If you like sandy beach and long walk, this might be dive spot for you. Public access to the beach is only 22 feet 8 inches wide, there is no parking at all, only narrow road to beach to unload and load, you have to drive off to parking area at Greenbank Farm, park your car while your buddy guards your gear at the water edge. Then walk back to the beach. Repeat after the dive in reverse order. The public access was fought over about few years ago in the court, the owners of neighboring property lost and access was restored, but I am told, the owners don't like divers, so consider yourself being warned. 🙂
I was invited to join a friend Ken Collins, who surveys sea stars here regularly and of course, when he mentioned Pycnopodia haven, I gladly accepted the invitation. We were joined by another Whidbey diver, professional videographer Florian Graner.
Underwater? Lot of sand. The reward? Sunflower stars. For some reason, they seem to like it here...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Greenbank March 30th - part 2
While Ken & Florian did the real Pycnopodia science,
I goofed off, looking at other marine life... :)
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Greenbank dive - part 3 - the slugs.
And this concludes my first visit to the new locality, hopefully not the last 🙂
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty. April 2nd.
First dive in April - crabs and anemones.
Father and his young son snorkeling above. I always like to see family enjoying the outdoors. The visibility in the shallows was not great and southerly wind created choppy surface waters.
And they are in wetsuits !
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty - fish and slugs.
Another Lingcod getting cleaned by little Scalyhead sculpin.
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