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 » Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:18 am

Some of the Deception Pass fish. We don't have Garibaldies, but we do have Lingcod, rockfish and sculpins. :)
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Tue Aug 06, 2019 6:53 am

Wrapping up the Deception Pass dive with subjects which do not swim away when you point your camera at them :)
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:30 am

Why returning to the same places again and again? One rock from the Keystone Jetty photographed on every dive in past years shows that changes do occur constantly, even if not noticeably, at least not during our short dive there... Only the Painted anemone seems to be a permanent resident.
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Last edited by Jan K on Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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ScubaJess
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by ScubaJess » Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:44 am

The rock of life is looking so much better! Thanks for posting this, I love to see the changes. :)

I hope we can get together to dive with you on Sunday!
Live Long And Prosper!!!

Stay Warm underwater with the Weezle Extreme Plus undergarment! Please let me know if you would like to order one or have any questions. :luv: :partydance: :eric: :taco:

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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:27 am

Are you coming to Keystone ? Or just to Pickles? :) :) :)

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oldsalt
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by oldsalt » Wed Aug 07, 2019 12:51 pm

I've read accounts of anemones living for many decades in aquaria - close to a century. 14 years in the wild seems reasonable. Is that a drone shot?
-Curt
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:40 pm

Yes Curt, drone shot by a fellow diver who let me use the image.
What I find interesting is that the anemone is still in the same spot for the sixteen years I have started to keep an eye on that rock.
Octopus used to live in the hole under that rock for many years. Not anymore...

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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Thu Aug 08, 2019 6:35 am

Few of the Keystone Jetty residents - Lingcod colors and rockfish, some of them gravid.
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Fri Aug 09, 2019 8:13 am

The old wharf, better known as "The Pilings" is in my humble opinion becoming less of an attraction. Battered by last winter storms and invaded by kelp even between the inner pilings, it lost its feel as an underwater cathedral. Feels more like an obstacle course... These days I spend just a short time here before I head to the more attractive Jetty on the other end of the rope trail.
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Sat Aug 10, 2019 8:02 am

Diver finds Lewis's moonsnail. The Moonsnail just laid eggs in the form of a collar. In the process finds its favorite meal - cockle bivalve. Cockle escapes using its long foot, flipping the moonsnail upside down in the process. Diver figures out while he finds many of cockles out on the surface instead of being buried up to their siphons as is the norm... :)
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Sun Aug 11, 2019 7:28 pm

Keystone, August 11. I could only watch as group of my friends negotiated the slippery rocks on their way to the another underwater adventure. Congratulations ScubaJess on her 700th dive!
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:57 am

Langley Harbor, August 12. I managed to make one dive before the tooth extraction since the DAN recommends:
"Normally, four to six weeks is sufficient time to allow for the risk of infection, provided there has been good healing and gum tissue has begun to fill in the empty socket."
What I found wasn't pretty. Wasting sea stars all over the place, too numerous to count. Most of them Mottled stars. I found only one small Sunflower star, about 3 inches across, none of the larger juveniles I saw here six weeks ago :(
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Sharkb8
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Sharkb8 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:35 am

I saw the same thing near the T-Dock in Mulkiteo last weekend. It was disheartening with all the positive signs as of late
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Sat Aug 17, 2019 7:15 am

While conducting my Sea Star Wasting survey at Langley Harbor and the scene of so many stars dying was rather depressing, I had a companion following me for most of the dive - Pacific Harbor Seal. The local fish were not too thrilled to have it around, but I didn't mind :)
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:53 pm

Keystone Jetty, August 18. Another meeting with friends. And again Sunday at low tide. Eric barbecued excellent veggie sausages, ScubaJess cheerful company and Mike, as always, friendly shore support. Although I could not join them in diving, I donned wetsuit and for 58 minutes snorkeled along the jetty and the kelp bed.
I forgot to mention, Happy Birthday Pat !
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 21, 2019 11:40 am

The snorkeling substitute to scuba I enjoyed on Sunday, could have possibly added a new critter to my list of Whidbey Island underwater residents. In the very shallow waters of Keystone Jetty, lurking out from crevice was a fish which at first glance looked like a Penpoint Gunnel. However, after looking at it on my computer screen, I noticed that in addition to missing dark bar across its eye, which is its trademark, it also sports a tiny pectoral fin which is mentioned in the guide "Coastal Fishes of the PNW" by Andy Lamb and Phil Edgell, I think I found my first ROCKWEED GUNNEL !! And since Milton Love, the author of the magnificent book "Certainly More Than You Want to Know About The Fishes of The Pacific Coast" also suggested the possibility, I am adding it to the list :)
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Vjw » Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:24 pm

Congratulations Jan on the new find! That’s so exciting!! :joshsmith:

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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 21, 2019 4:05 pm

Thank you Valerie...

I wish I could get more of the gunnel's body in the picture, but it was not interested to make identification easier by coming out into the open...
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Sat Aug 24, 2019 7:16 am

August 23rd. Just when I thought I got the currents in Deception Pass figured out with the new NOAA tables, here comes Friday morning. Six of us gather at the Little North Beach, suit up and walk down to the beach for another dive at the DP. Well, today the slack seems to come early, closer to the old tables, at least 30 minutes before the new table prediction. So it looks like we are back to the "good ol' days" , look at the water and go in hoping for good times. And we all had good dive, the currents were not problem, everybody came out with big smiles. Visibility was good and only the weather above could be better, the light rain at times meant that it was rather dark beneath the waves, due to the overcast. But as MAD's Alfred E.Neuman told us so many times: "What, Me Worry? " :) :) :)
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:23 am

Some of the critters from the Friday dive at Deception Pass, showing the neighborhood where they live ...
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Tue Aug 27, 2019 7:46 am

It was a busy last four days, three of them diving Deception Pass, so I am behind processing the pixels crowding the hard drive. It is more fun to take pictures than processing them. Here are few more... As I was looking over the kelp blades and marvel at the interesting patterns carved into them, in vain I was looking for the critter which can be credited with it. The only one I found was the Graceful Kelp Crab, it it was not doing it, it was just hiding among only one of the display. I did not see any snails, sea urchins, chitons, so I have no idea "Who Dunnit ?".
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oldsalt
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by oldsalt » Tue Aug 27, 2019 9:40 am

I get great pleasure from seeing the things you observe. Thanks for taking the time to process the pixels.
-Curt
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 28, 2019 8:29 am

More of the many pixels collected at Deception Pass this weekend. :)
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Wed Aug 28, 2019 2:48 pm

To assist in finding the sea fleas, here is a scenic view of their colony ...
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Jan K
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Re: Whidbey Island Critters

Post by Jan K » Fri Aug 30, 2019 7:35 am

Sunday August 25th. Third day of Deception Pass delights. And the sun is shining, unlike on the two previous days. Many tourists on the beach, but not one other diver shows up ... Happy to report, that although not numerous, the sea stars I did come across are still healthy.
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