27 June 2014

Two Solo Dives on the Big Coral Knoll with dancing Blennys and Turtles galore

I really like my Zuma BCD, so I used two luggage straps and some webbing to fashion a harness that would allow me to hang the pony bottle off this harness, which I could wear on top of the Zuma.  Worked just fine in my living room.  I took my harness to the beach this morning, though, and discovered that without the constant pull of gravity the pony bottle got in my way.  A lot.  I benched the pony bottle and took the camera instead.

I swam out to the sea rod and descended, then worked my way slowly East to the rock just North of the blocks. I haven't seen the Peppermint Shrimp since Tuesday and I couldn't find them today.  I went to the blocks to check on the insect, but I didn't find it.  Maybe it wasn't up yet.

I did spot a Sailfin Blenny who was busy celebrating the sunrise and got this picture of him.  Usually they dance for other blennys, but I couldn't see any others around.

I headed East up the gun sight, Irish Thighs, the Cigar Rock but missed the Gray Mid-way Rock and ended up at the Green Mountainous Coral SW of the Perpendicular Rocks.  From there I went by the Swept Rock and onto the Knoll.

Two small Green Turtles and one older Green turtle were hanging out on the Knoll getting cleaned and maybe looking for food.

They were a little timid, but allowed me to get pretty close for some of these shots.

I love the stooped shoulders look this turtle adopts while he waits for a cleaning.

Also found my friend the Rock Hind.  It still runs from me, but the allowable distance is shrinking.

Got back to the beach at 142 minutes sucking the last bit of air from my tank. My RMV was 0.39 ft3/min.

I saw Sue as I was getting out from the first dive.  She wanted to go out, but wasn't eager to race the life guard, so we went in for my second dive together, but went our own ways once we got out of the swimming area.  I went down at the Sea Rod and basically repeated my first dive.

This time I found the insect at the blocks and got some pictures, but they aren't that good.

Watched a Hogfish pick up a small hermit crab, shell and all, and race off to enjoy his spoils. He would stop and shake his head violently, trying to dislodge the crab from the shell, but he was out of sight before that issue got resolved.

Made several circles of the Knoll.  Tried to play with a little turtle, but he was confused and took off.

On the way back to the beach, I spotted a Southern Atlantic Stingray and got several going away shots. Still, it was exciting.

Took way too many photos. Ended up a 132 minute dive and a 0.35 ft3/min RMV.

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