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Monday, May 16, 2011

Friday at Blue Heron Bridge and a Sunday Re-Run

By Jeri L. Curley
5/6/2011 & 5/8/2011

Dianne Bryant went down with us one weekend and couldn't dive because of a sinus infection. She learned just how boisterous children can be. Having sand kicked in your face by unruly children is a good incentive for diving Blue Heron Bridge on a weekday. She talked to several people at the last meeting and came to me with a plan and the people for the dive. I applaud her initiative; it is greatly appreciated!!

We headed down as planned. Bill and Kathy were already there waiting for us. Bill even had time to tour the park before setting up his gear. For once I brought down my dive flag and Dianne offered to carry it. I attached party beads to it to make it easier for my buddies to spot—an idea I borrowed from Bobbi. I downgraded from my 5 mm wet suit to 3mm and we headed into the water. The water was initially chilly but we quickly got used to it. Finally warm water! We followed my normal circuit—under the sail boats, over to the east and back to the big bridge. Along the way we spotted not just a few octopi but at least 20. One was peeking out of a soda bottle. He disappeared too quickly to get a photo. A couple were camouflaged very well and when I pointed them out, one inked me. Under the large bridge I notice a rock that had several Sailfin Blennies popping their heads out of holes in the rock. We watched a sharp-tailed eel hunt—a spotted eel just looked at us in disdain. It was an exceptional dive.

Then I got back home and noticed one of my dive buddies who was there the same day had posted photos of sea horses and a frog fish on Facebook. So when Bobbi suggested we go back on Sunday, I jumped at the chance. It was Mother's Day and we knew the park would be busy. We headed down early to get a parking spot. The park was very busy but there were only two groups of students in the water with us. We started to set up and I looked around for my weights. OH, NO!! Bobbi split her weights with me and I switched to my shorty to compensate for being light on weights. Octopi were all over the place. I noticed an interestingly colored scrawled filefish—the normal colored one was not far away. Mating colors? Another unusual inhabitant was a Barred Hamlet. The Sharpnose Puffers exhibited mating behavior, as did the Harlequin Bass. It was another exceptional dive.

 

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