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

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In case you wonder where the blue in some fish comes from...
The blue Lingcod of Keystone Jetty...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline October 11th. Red Irish Lord encounters .
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline October 11th. Part 2
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Langley Harbor October 16.
Great visibility. Although I really enjoyed the clarity, it also made me sad. Swimming over the tire reef it made it revealed how much the place changed, and not for better. The diversity is gone. The most obvious is the diminished number of sea anemones which used to thrive here. Named after the terrestrial flowers, they covered many of the tire reef structures. Hence my cry: "Where are all the flowers gone, long time passing"...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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More from Langley Harbor survey.
October 16.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty, October 18th.
Ten days ago, I was lucky to have the same calm waters to dive into. This time the visibility underwater wasn't as good, but still nice. When you see Lingcod with its mouth wide open, take a closer look. It is advertising for cleanup inside its cavernous mouth or already has Scalyhead sculpin already working. At Keystone it is rather common sight...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by MorningDiverBob »

I like your pictures of clear Lingcod mouth opened with Scalyhead Sculpin. Great photos ! 👍
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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MorningDiverBob wrote: Fri Oct 22, 2021 5:02 pm I like your pictures of clear Lingcod mouth opened with Scalyhead Sculpin. Great photos ! 👍
Thank you Bob, glad that you too are still diving. You should share more of your pictures !


Keystone Jetty, October 18.
Not much left of local Bull kelp?
Fried egg jellyfish, that what is for lunch for Northern Kelp Crabs.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Keystone Jetty, October 18th. The rest of the story.... :)
Schools of Shiner perch replaced the school of juvenile Yellowtail rockfish. Couple of anemone I struggle to positively identify, the markings are somewhat different from the pictures in my ID books. And to wrap the sightings, Northern Harrier on post in nearby lake...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by oldsalt »

Jan: Great shot of the Northern Harrier. Even though I no longer dive, I frequently stop at Keystone to check out the birds. The Ebird website lists 169 species that have been identified there. I find it unusual that you fail to identify something. Maybe one of your fans can i.d. the anemone for the rest of us. Even better, maybe it's an undescribed specie.
Thanks for your posts, Curt :rawlings:
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Tidepool Geek »

Hi Jan,
It has been said that the best way to get the right answer on the Internet is to post the wrong answer so maybe I can help on those unidentified anemones. Here's what I think:
The red one is some sort of Epiactis - Maybe E. lisbethae or E. ritteri
The other one is Urticina clandestina
I now await being corrected by someone!
Confidently yours,
Alex
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Tidepool Geek wrote: Tue Oct 26, 2021 7:59 am Hi Jan,
It has been said that the best way to get the right answer on the Internet is to post the wrong answer so maybe I can help on those unidentified anemones. Here's what I think:
The red one is some sort of Epiactis - Maybe E. lisbethae or E. ritteri
The other one is Urticina clandestina
I now await being corrected by someone!
Confidently yours,
Alex

Thank you Alex,
You are right on both ways of ID stuff on the internet. I had another ID on the first one, E.ritteri which is not in my two guide books. So I will stick with E.ritteri as the markings along the base don't reach up the column. Lets wait for others to correct us :)
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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With the help of my friends -
the undetermined anemone got name:
Ritter's brooding anemone.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Possession Point Fingers, October 21st.
The underwater scenery here is rather stark and does not offer much of color. But it is still home to marine life...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Driftwood Park pond. October 23rd.
Moon jellies, zillion moon jellies. Well, maybe only half zillion.🤣
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline October 27th. The recent wind and rains combined with high tides made a mess on the surface of Burrows Pass waters. But below, I found two not so common critters, juvenile Puget Sound King Crab and inside a large Hard Gnarled Clump sponge an elusive Sparkling Shrimp. Although I have seen PSKC many times before, this shrimp, in all these years, only once before.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline October 27.
Giant Pink-mouth hydroid. It is not yet proven that the one living in our waters is the same specie described back in 1758 from the waters of Atlantic Ocean. So for the time being, here is some information on the Tubularia indivisa, Linnaeus, to which it bears very close resemblance.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Skyline October 27th. The rest of processed pixels.
Interesting to see how Red Irish Lord choose dress more appropriately to its resting/hunting place than to its name 🙂
Buffalo went the same route, choose the same tailor. 🤣
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Deception Pass dive, October 30th.
It looks like the painting of the bridge is finished, last of the safety and protection structure is being removed.
However:
WINTER SCHEDULE DECEPTION PASS
North Beach access road, parking lot and restroom closed
Nov. 1 - March 31.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Deception Pass. October 30th.
Mosshead warbonnet, not in good mood.
More friendly to divers than to a fellow Mosshead. It is all about territory. 🙂
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Langley Harbor survey, November 2nd.The month begins with lot of rain and winds.
Protected from southerly wind, one of the few places on Whidbey to dive when the south wind blows is here. Sea star wasting survey - found few sick Ochre and Mottled, one healthy juvenile Sunflower and number baby stars - so there is still hope... :)
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Langley Harbor, November 2nd - some fish encounters.
Interesting to find other fish mixing with gang of gunnels...
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Holmes Harbor, November 3rd.
Hooded nudibranch appeared in the Eel grass patch. Not in the numbers like they did in the past, but they are still a welcome sight here.
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

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Holmes Harbor November 3rd. Encounters with Lion's Mane Jellies and some of the hitchhikers they carry on their final journey. This time, I managed to escape their stinging tentacles. Good visibility helped, for in the past I got burned on my face as I swam across their trailing weaponry without even seeing the jelly's main body...
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