curiomo

The Alabaster Nudibranch can be found in the temperate waters of the Pacific, from Alaska to California and along the coasts of Russia and Japan. The beautiful, wispy white tipped cerata are actually the animal’s lungs. But don’t let it’s delicate form fool you, this nudi’s jaws are strong enough to crack open the shell of a snail, one of its preferred meals - photo taken at Seattle, Washington

Green Sea Turtles (”Honu” in Hawaiian) begin their lives as omnivores, but then transition to an all vegetarian diet as they enter adulthood. They eat mostly sea grasses and algae and it is said that herbivorous turtles like these tend to host fewer parasitic organisms such as barnacles living on their shells, as a result of their vegetarian diet. Judging by the beauty and cleanliness of this dude’s shell, I’d say that the theory has some merit - photo taken at Maarehaa Kandu, Indian Ocean

A small group of us went out looking for whales one day out in Palau, far out from shore. We thought we’d seen signs of the whales, so a few of us jumped into the water and while we were looking around these Silky Sharks suddenly appeared out of nowhere (we were out in the bluewater, meaning that you couldn’t see the bottom or any structure or island around you). The Silky Sharks were attracted by our splashing and the sounds of the boat.

These types of sharks live out in the open ocean, well away from coastal waters and reefs. To survive in that barren environment, they need to be extremely fast, agile and able to sense and hunt prey from a great distance. I loved interacting with these beautiful and inquisitive sharks - photo taken offshore Palau, Western Pacific Ocean

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Many people have no idea what a Sea Scallop looks like when it’s alive. They are very different than other bivalves (such as clams, oysters and mussels) in that they have dozens of small eyes dotted along their mantles. These tiny, spherical eyes work together to detect when there is plankton passing by to feed on and can also sense predators. 

Scallops are further unique in their ability to swim up into the water when they are in danger and to even control their direction while doing so, by clapping their two halves together. It’s hilarious sight to see.

The second photo is a closeup view of the Scallop’s eyes, which employ an advanced focusing mirror that amplifies light onto the retina much in the same way that a cat’s eyes work to see well in dim light - photo taken at Blakely Rock, Salish Sea, USA

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The Saraswati Anemone Shrimp makes its home on a sea anemone (the purple and green). Fish allow this 1-cm long “cleaner shrimp” to crawl all over them, including inside their mouths and gills, in order to eat tiny unwanted parasites off of the much larger animals. 

Since they play such an important role in the health of the reef ecosystem, most if not all other animals just let them do their jobs and don’t try to eat them.

If you look closely you can see right through this shrimp’s exoskeleton and notice the clutch of eggs it’s carrying - photo taken at Kri Island, Raja Ampat, Indonesia

The Blue-Ringed Octopus is a tiny and extremely venomous cephalopod found in the tropical waters of the pacific. Each individual carries enough venom to kill over two dozen people within minutes. There is no anti-venom. However, they are not aggressive and will flash their brilliant blue rings when threatened, as a warning of their toxicity - photo taken at Wainilu, Rinca Island, Indonesia


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The underwater world is so amazing when you light it up, unveiling so many rich colors that are typically hidden behind the endless blue caused by the scattering of light as it travels through water. 

Once in awhile (usually when my batteries die) I like to shoot using only natural light. This is what a reef can look like to the naked eye.

Giant Trevallies cruising through a school of Bluestreak Fusiliers  - photo taken at Castle Rock, North Komodo, Flores Sea