Saturday morning saw us launching from Harbour Island in slightly windy conditions but by the time we’d kitted up and were ready for our dive at Cow and Calf, the wind had dropped. The water was clear and cool and after the initial brain-freeze moment whilst descending to the sea floor below us, we soon forgot the temperature as we explored the beautiful reef.
There were lots of critters out and about, with many nudibranchs from the tiniest of “just hatched” fiery nudibranchs to huge gasflames. We found a very cute little cuttlefish, a really small octopus and lots of speckled and peacock klipfish hanging out on the sea fans and amongst the rocks. Quite a lot of silver hottentot and kolstert fish also followed us around the reef.
By the time our dive was finished, our fingers were numb and our lips frozen (which made trying to keep your mouth closed whilst eating the post-dive chocolate a messy business!!).
Back to the harbour to drop off and collect divers, the sun warmed us up and we were all raring to go for our second dive, this time at Stone Dog.
The dive was spectacular and we explored some really cool pinnacles covered with sea fans and beautiful soft corals and lacy false corals. Perfect hunting ground for coral, black, gasflame and soft coral nudibranchs. Another great dive came to an end all too soon and after saying goodbye to that last inkspot nudibranch and citrine nudibranch with its egg ribbon, it was back to the boat again.
Saturday’s Dives: 11C and 8 – 10 m viz
The following day we launched from Harbour Island again and despite the south easterly wind having blown constantly throughout the night, dirty water had inexplicably moved in along the coastline. So, we went further afield searching for clear water and opted for Blousteen where the water was clearest.
We still had a great time exploring the reef and found many very interesting critters. Two ginormous octopus and a really large cuttlefish; lots of red roman and twotone finger fins were around, as well as lots of puffadder shysharks. There were also many new egg cases of shyshark species, which is great to see.
On the nudibranch front, we found lots of crowned, frilled, gasflame and silvertip nudibranchs as well as scribbled and blue speckled dorids. Kate also found Catriona casha on the tubular hydroids and Richard really had a lot of fun taking some splendid photos of one of the huge octopus.
Sunday’s Dive: 14C and 3 – 4 m viz
Thank you to everyone who joined us on our dives – it was great to see Lewellyn from Maputo again and to have Jonas from Germany join us too. A big welcome to our Indigo first-timers who joined us on Sunday – we look forward to seeing you again soon 😀