Monday, January 24, 2011

28 Dec 2010 - Dive 12 to 13 at Mabul and Kapalai

Dive 12 - Paradise 1 (Mabul) 

Dive: 81
Duration: 69mins
Avg Depth: 11.9m
Max Depth: 13.7m

This was potentially one of the best dive of the trip but ended up a fustrating one. Murphy decides to pay me a visit. Soon after descent, the DM show us a pair of ghost pipefish. Oh boy, after so long I finally saw them for the first time! Totally thrilled and happy to see these and I started to take a shot. Wait? No flash. Checked the settings and make sure the forced flash is on. Nope still no flash.. Took out the sync cord  and give it a good shake, turn off and on the camera.. The flash just didn't trigger. Then it finally hit me! Damn! I didn't pop up the flash (mechanical trigger) on the camera after I took it out the night before. I always did a test fire each time after I took the camera out and I missed it this time! You can literally hear my cursing and swearing at myself and the camera underwater. Ok, now I just gotta salvage the situation and make the best out of it. I promptly proceed to dismantle my focus light and use that for illumination. Apart from the initial pair of halimeda ghost pipefish, there was also a ornate ghost pipefish and a zebra snout seahorse. Then we spotted a very cute juvenile shortfin lionfish. The tinest I've seen so far for this species and it sure was cute. Just about smaller than the size of a Ricola candy. Next I saw a waspfish for the first time. And the finale was seeing 2 halimeda ghost pipefish and 1 ornate ghost pipefish all together. It's really such a pity that the strobe cannot be fired to get the full colours of these amazingly beautiful creatures. A painful lesson to me for sure.

Zebra Snout Seahorse (Hippocampus barbouri) at Paradise 1 (13m) - Mabul, Malaysia

Juvenile Shortfin Lionfish (Dendrochirus brachypterus) at Paradise 1 (12m) - Mabul, Malaysia
Ornate Ghost Pipefish (Solenostomus paradoxus)  at Paradise 1 (13m) - Mabul, Malaysia
Dive 12 - Kapalai House Reef

Dive: 82
Duration: 53mins
Avg Depth: 12.6m
Max Depth: 18.6m

We descended around house #5 to the right of Kapalai housereef. Saw a couple of different shrimps at various locations and I have some fun getting their photos. Along the way I also saw a couple of jawfish which I initially thought was just some blennies. Too bad they aren't incubating any eggs. And finally a giant frogfish greeted us goodbye just before we ascended and end our dive for this trip. There are certainly more that I wished to see here but nonetheless, it's still a great trip. Looking forward to be back for more in the future. 

Dwarf Hawkfish (Cirrhitichthys falco) at Kapalai house reef (13m) - Kapalai, Malaysia

Peacock-tail Anemone Shrimp (Periclimenes brevicarpalis) at Kapalai house reef (14m) - Kapalai, Malaysia

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