Splendor on the reef.

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Posted by Merry on October 24, 2013 at 12:43:55:

Honeymoon cove last weekend: colorful, enchanting, serene.

Phil and Kevin descend into reef-blue water.

1 Kevin & Phil photo KevinampPhil800bDSC_2748_zps1ed314a5.jpg

2 Just kelp photo 2kelp690DSC_2906_zps19c6fab1.jpg

These Pacific Barracuda were wary on the first dive. By the end of the second dive, they had decided that I was no threat, and meandered much closer.

3 Barracuda photo Barracuda0DSC_2738_zpsb396c16d.jpg

4a Barracuda photo Barracuda1DSC_2902_zpsae6b9d4a.jpg

Kevin meandered by, too.

5 Kevin in kelp photo Kevininkelp800DSC_2813_zps43a01a3a.jpg

6 Lone blacksmith photo LoneblacksmithDSC_2660_zps4e73e624.jpg

8 Reef photo WindowinthereefsheepheadDSC_2697_zpsce869ae7.jpg

Big and close.
7 Big Daddy Sheephead photo BigDaddysheepheadDSC_2653_zpsb5287d50.jpg

Nicely camouflaged California scorpionfish. I enjoy the gritty defiance of these prickly, venomous fish.

9 yellow scorpionfish photo ScorpionfishcamoDSC_2720_zps16950526.jpg

10 Scorpface photo Scorpionfish800DSC_2846_zpsef61a3cc.jpg

Snubnose sculpin
11b Snubnose sculpin photo Snubnosesculpin800LiYDSC_2835_zps9a1fcb8c.jpg

Furry hermit crab
12 Furry hermit photo Furryhermitcrab800DSC_2855_zpsccb9cbe6.jpg

With stellar vis comes vivid color. Tiny Cuthona divae nudi on hedgehog hydroid.
13 Colorful reef, Cuthona divae photo CuthonadivaeLSDSC_2833_zpsfa4f606c.jpg

Couple of Cuthona divae with eggs
14 Cuthona divae and eggs photo Cuthonadivaeampeggs800-DSC_2853_zps10c983d6.jpg

Dendrodoris behrensi, not often seen.
15 Dendrodoris behrensi photo DendrodorisbehrensiDSC_2681_zps24045961.jpg

Atagema alba
16 Atagema alba photo AtagemaalbaDSC_2774_zps9a629f19.jpg

Polycera tricolor
17 Polycera tricolor photo Polyceratricolor800DSC_2886_zpsb8c46163.jpg

Tiny Triopha catalina out on a limb with sabellid worm looking on.
18 Tiny Triopha and sabellid worm photo TeenyTriopha800DSC_2843_zpsd86fc836.jpg

This reef is a jackpot of Okenia rosacea.
19 Okenia rosacea photo Okeniarosacea800DSC_2857_zpsbdffd347.jpg

A polyclad flatworm, Eurylepta californica
20 Eurylepta californica photo EuryleptacalifornicawormDSC_2728_zpsfaa091d7.jpg

Serpulid worm
21 Serpulid worm photo Redampwhiteserpulid800DSC_2872_zps281c285f.jpg

Sadly, time to head home after 3 hours on the reef.

Under the boat photo Kelpundertheboat800DSC_2818_zpsed0cd467.jpg

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