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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Sunflower star encounter

Postby Jan K » Mon Nov 05, 2007 11:18 am

I dove a new site on Whidbey yesterday, rather uninspiring underwater topography with not much cover sea life -Current swept sandy slope with patches of empty clam shells and gravel. Searching for critter to photograph, I came upon an area with many very small, juvenile Orange Sea Pens. Large Sunflower Star in its usual fashion was moving speedily over the sand approaching the Sea pens. I was curious to see what will happen when the two creatures meet. One is well know predator which even eats its own species and the other a gentle filter feeder, much, much smaller size. I expected the Sea pen bury itself in sand and hope for best, since the Sunflower star has no difficulty digging up clams buried way down under the sand. Well, was I in for a surprise. Not only the Sea pen did not panic and bury itself, it stood up and the Sunflower Star stopped in its track!. As you all know when watching “Pycnopodia” marching across the seafloor, it is all legs. When it came close to the tiny pen, the tube feet retracted and the arm of the star reared up, without even touching the pen. I saw it repeated again and again when the star moved sideways and encountering the other sea pens in the group. It did not crawl over them as I expected. The sea star was obviously stopped by some thing coming from the sea pen, but not visible to my eyes, it was not transmitted via touch... The Sunflower star then gingerly moved away from the sea pens. ...

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LCF
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Postby LCF » Sat Nov 03, 2007 7:32 pm

One of the things I love about your pictures is that they make me aware of creatures I may very well have looked past, or not even noticed. I'll have to look for the slime worms from now on!
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Jan K
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Late Halloween

Postby Jan K » Sat Nov 03, 2007 10:34 am

I took the liberty of turning the photo upside down and adding little bit of Hollywood to the scene - the way the blobs of worms wiggle and shake when you swim by, could give you creepy feeling if it wasn't a sunny day yesterday .. :pale:

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Jan K
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Postby Jan K » Thu Nov 01, 2007 8:09 am

Tom Nic wrote:Was he actually sleeping, or did you just catch him with his eyes closed?!


The reason I depicted this GPO as sleeping was that unlike other encounters with GPOs, when they move a little and change colors when I move around taking pictures, this one just sit there, and was in the same location and posture almost one hour later when I checked on him at the end of dive. And no, he wasn't dead \:D/

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Tom Nic
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Postby Tom Nic » Thu Nov 01, 2007 8:00 am

Was he actually sleeping, or did you just catch him with his eyes closed?!

Very cool, as always Jan!
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Jan K
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Postby Jan K » Thu Nov 01, 2007 7:09 am

Scubak wrote:Jan,
I'm surprised you didn't do a Halloween cartoon...something like your christmas card... Kirsten


Kirsten, I got caught up in diving and work.. So here is one from the past..

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Postby Scubak » Wed Oct 31, 2007 11:26 pm

Jan,
I'm surprised you didn't do a Halloween cartoon...something like your christmas card...
no worries though, your pics are wonderful as always.
I sent the link to this thread to my friend, whose 6 year old son is just now "discovering" the ocean and sea "pickles"... :)
Thanks so much. I want to order him one of your books and ship to him for a suprise...
Thanks so much.

Kirsten

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Jan K
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GPO

Postby Jan K » Wed Oct 31, 2007 11:22 pm

Octopus Lullaby :-({|=

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Postby Sounder » Tue Oct 30, 2007 8:09 pm

Jan K wrote:
Pez7378 wrote:How long do you have to wait, sitting in one spot to observe this type of behavior. I see critters all the time, however I cannot predict what it is they are up to. This is truly amazing footage of nature at its best!


Once you recognize potential predator - prey encouter, hunker down and let nature perform. Some plays are longer then others, sometimes nothing happens - so dive often \:D/


I love this philosophy. Such wisdom. :prayer:
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Jan K
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Postby Jan K » Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:32 pm

Pez7378 wrote:How long do you have to wait, sitting in one spot to observe this type of behavior. I see critters all the time, however I cannot predict what it is they are up to. This is truly amazing footage of nature at its best!


Once you recognize potential predator - prey encouter, hunker down and let nature perform. Some plays are longer then others, sometimes nothing happens - so dive often \:D/

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Postby Pez7378 » Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:14 pm

How long do you have to wait, sitting in one spot to observe this type of behavior. I see critters all the time, however I cannot predict what it is they are up to. This is truly amazing footage of nature at its best!

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Postby nwscubamom » Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:50 pm

Jan, that is really interesting stuff! I knew what it ate, and that it bore a hole, but never knew all the pouncing stuff that the Lewis's Moonsnail does! Very cool that you caught that on film!

- Janna :)
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Postby Sounder » Tue Oct 30, 2007 4:18 pm

Nice work Jan!!! That's amazing!!! I would love to see video of this event. =D> :prayer:
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Postby Seth T. » Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:06 pm

Wow! Sucks to be the cockle! :pale:
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Tom Nic
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Postby Tom Nic » Tue Oct 30, 2007 2:01 pm

Deightful Stuff Jan!
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"Anyone who thinks this place is over moderated is bat-crazy anarchist." -Ben, Airsix
"Warning: No dive masters are going to be there, Just a bunch of old fat guys taking pictures of fish." -Bassman

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Jan K
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Moon snail hunt

Postby Jan K » Tue Oct 30, 2007 1:33 pm

I had same encounter more then a year ago. Same technique applied by the hunter and the hunted. Same result.

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Jan K
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Stomach Wing

Postby Jan K » Sun Oct 28, 2007 2:38 pm

It makes me wonder if the scientist who named this slug had limited vocabulary or weird sense of humor..
Another swimming slug - the other common names are little bit more appropriate in my humble opinion ...

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Jan K
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Dancer

Postby Jan K » Sun Oct 21, 2007 8:26 am

Giant nudibranch - here I am trying to convey the locomotion of slug swimming ...

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Jan K
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Postby Jan K » Sat Oct 20, 2007 9:53 am

Thank you Valerie, they are difficult to capture with Point and Shoot, that is why I missed the better moment when the seal was looking at me for a split second..
And from the waters of Langley:
Very small slug, about a quarter inch if that. I don't see them often, but that might be more due to my eyesight #-o

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Postby Zen Diver » Sat Oct 20, 2007 8:32 am

Great shot Jan! =D> I've never managed to capture a shot of a seal underwater, fast little buggers.

-Valerie

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Jan K
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Harbor seal

Postby Jan K » Fri Oct 19, 2007 10:02 am

This was my first time sighting of Harbor seal at Keystone, probably because I always look somewhere else, ususally at some small critter and I would most likely miss a Gray whale passing by.. This pup zoomed by, managing to click just one picture. .. #-o

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Jan K
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Postby Jan K » Wed Oct 17, 2007 3:50 pm

John Rawlings wrote:Arrrr....keep your harpoon blades sharpened as we go off on the quest for the white Great sculpin! At least we can refer to Jan as Ishmael and NOT Ahab! Or....have you lost a leg to the white Great sculpin and not told us about it, Jan? #-o - John


Thank you John, I do prefer to be Ishmael , for he managed to survive and let us know that: : Ahab, and the Pequod, which, "like Satan, would not sink to hell till she had dragged a living part of heaven along with her...

And I enjoy the company of NW Dive Club :salute:

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Tom Nic
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Postby Tom Nic » Wed Oct 17, 2007 3:23 pm

Very cool quotes!

Here we are getting an edgymacation on NwDiveClub as well! \:D/
More Pics Than You Have Time To Look AT
"Anyone who thinks this place is over moderated is bat-crazy anarchist." -Ben, Airsix
"Warning: No dive masters are going to be there, Just a bunch of old fat guys taking pictures of fish." -Bassman

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John Rawlings
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Postby John Rawlings » Wed Oct 17, 2007 12:52 pm

"From hell's heart, I stab at thee. For hate's sake, I spit my last breath at thee!"

Ah, yes....always a useful line at parties and other social gatherings!

What a GREAT thread this is! Where else can you get beautiful photos, entertaining cartoons, a marine biology education....AND a discussion of literary classics? =D>

- John
“Don’t pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he’ll just kill you.”

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Postby Joshua Smith » Wed Oct 17, 2007 12:22 pm

"though following the sea as highwaymen the road, they but plunder other ships, other fragments of the land like themselves...."

My favorite quotes from this book were used by Ricardo Montablan in Star Trek II : The Wrath of Khan-


"He tasks me. He tasks me, and I SHALL HAVE HIM!"

and:

"From hell's heart, I stab at thee. For hate's sake, I spit my last breath at thee!"

:evil4:
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