Pages

2011-08-28

Call off the search parties - Nemo has been found!

Had another swim back out to the reef this lunch time, along with Howard the DD. I went out a few days ago too, and deliberately didn't take the camera to make sure it was a shorter trip. Needless to say, on that trip I saw lots of interesting things, but with no evidence, they're already fading in my memory.
But today's snorkel ...
Howard was having plenty of fun.


















Which is the purpose of the exercise.

















Turtle shell
After much splashing around, and hunting for the reef break (where there is a line of coral heads at 4-5m, with a lot of life), we headed back towards shore.
I spotted this turtle carapace, laying on the seabed.

Last time I was here on Nyuni, I found parts of a turtle plastron (the front, dorsal or belly piece of the shell. And I'd found washed-up pieces of them on the beach too. So finding a carapace wasn't a great surprise.
After I'd taken a couple of photos of it as it lay on the seabed, interior with the ribs visible upwards, I was wondering if I'd have any hope of getting it back home. CITES, paperwork, difficult. And look at the size of it - that drag anchor for the goodie-bag is about 12cm long. I'm not getting that into my rig bag!
So, I got my photos first, then looked at the problem of "Can I carry this to shore without drowning?", as a necessary precursor to "Can I get this through customs?"
Then I turned it over. Surprise time!
The shell started to delaminate. This dark outer covering came off as thin flexible sheets of a plastic-like material, with a layer of flesh (fatty?) bonding it onto the expanded ribs of the carapace (the bony shell).

I decided that I wasn't going to be able to carry this back to shore. The rest of the "get through customs" problem becomes a non-problem.


It's still there, if you want it. Though it's probably moved with each tide.



Next thing I spotted ... Can you see him? (Or, more likely, her?)

I saw it snaking across the seabed, then hiding behind this rock.















This is a crop from the main image above.





It's a Moray Eel, I think a White-eye Moray, but I'm not certain on that.









And for about the 4th time, Blogger's accursed post editor has lost 4 or 5 photos that I uploaded. And this is a really horrible, horrible editor.






A different type of puffer fish.

Oh, sorry, Blogger has lost the original picture of a different species of puffer fish.











And finally the bloody anenomefish that inspired the title of this post. Unfortunately the pictures have got so screwed up and I don't have time to struggle with this pathetic editor any more.

2011-08-10

Where Am I?

People have been asking.
The link above should (should) centre on the rig location.
Oh, hang on, what does this do?

View Larger Map
Lots of code ; what does it do? Oh, cool. Saves me lots of screen-shotting etc. It's got the usual controls too.
Camp is here :

View Larger Map
Bar is here :

View Larger Map

It all adds up to a small island off the coast of Tanzania called Nyuni.

People who know me will know that I'm obviously here looking for enchyaline Blue Holes out on the reef, with the intention of discovering "Caverns Measureless to Man" containing Pleistocene alien craft. So far I've found a choked sinkhole that obviously takes water when it's raining, which averages every 2nd-3rd day. "Toto, we're not in Britain any more!"

See earlier posts for swimming photos. Fishy things which haven't tried to eat me (yet).

The aerial photography is obviously a couple of years old. The island has acquired a squatter camp of several hundred people since I was here last, a resident rat problem (goes with the rubbish in the squatter village), and the maintenance as a coconut plantation seems to have been abandoned, so scrubby undergrowth is slowly taking over from the palms. Which by comparison with SongoSongo Island to the south (with it's airstrip), seems to be the normal vegetation for the area.
Oh well, back to the grind of searching for CMTM!

2011-08-09

More Ice Island News

Petermann's Ice Island - location update.
For those that haven't been keeping an ear to the, err, water, this is a rather substantial lump of ice that fell off Greenland a year ago. It's slowly working it's way out towards the Atlantic Ocean, where it has the potential to become a significant hazard to shipping. And to the oil installations on the Grand Banks.
The link above gives more detail, including notes I've been making on it's progress over the last few months.
I've just made time to update my satellite surveying (details in Patrick's blog, above), and when last visible (Aug 05th), the berg was just off the northernmost tip of Newfoundland, near Belle Isle. Latitude 51.53N, Longitude 54.95W.

Before long, if not already, it should be visible from the coast of Newfoundland.
And if it does decide to wander off through the oil fields ... there will be "interesting times".