It's about diving. And cats.

Me diving

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Counting Nudis with Kevin

Kevin and I were back at Lobos today, counting nudibranchs with Clinton, John, and Mike. I snapped up the two shallower transects to count, since I think they are a bit more fun to count. They were also the two that I pointed out to Kevin yesterday. We swam out a little past the mouth of the cove, and dropped in about 30 feet. We headed over to the reef and I found the shallowest transect. I had to swim up and down it a couple times to convince myself it was the right spot (there is a hole in the reef, which I couldn't find, because I was at a funny angle, but on the second pass I saw it). I outlined the transect for Kevin, and we started looking. The plan was that I would show him stuff as I found it, and he would point out anything that he saw that I missed. The viz was not that good (20 chunky feet), not that that really matters for counting nudis. But it was also rather surgy, which is pretty annoying when you are trying to get up close to look for something tiny. I started looking for Rostangas on some orange sponge and found only one. I actually spent a lot of time looking at orange sponge, but that was the only one I saw all day! I was delighted to find a Festive Triton, since most of the other nudis we saw were pretty boring (San Diegos, Cadlina luteomarginata, Peltodoris). Kevin found a very small (5mm) oval, bumpy, white nudi. He had very tall rhinophores. At first I thought it might be a funny shaped Aegires, but after talking to Clinton, I think the tall rhinophores and the shape mean it was probably Diaphorodoris lirulatocauda, which I have never seen before. Speaking of Aegires, I also found one of those.

We moved onto the next transect after stopping to visit Itchy and Scratchy. Here we saw more of the usual, plus two Festive Tritons and a Triopha Catalinae. I also saw a Cadlina flavomaculata and another Aegeris. So not too bad, but still no Rostangas despite spending a lot of time looking on orange sponge. Kevin told me afterwards that he was looking at orange sponge too, and couldn't find any. Apparently Clinton also didn't see any (or very few) on his transects. So I guess it wasn't just me. By the time I was done on this transect, I was freezing, so we sprinted back in. Actually we were goofing off a bit in the sand channel on the way in. We both flopped over on our backs and looked up at the surface (which makes me nervous in doubles... worried I won't be able to right myself). We finally surfaced at the mouth of the cove, and swam in the rest of the way. 78 minutes, 49 feet, 50 degrees

We decided to punt dive 2, so we could get lunch and still get home not too late. I didn't bring the camera, since I didn't want it to get in the way while counting. Sorry, no pictures :(

No comments: