Lauderdale by the Sea video & pictures 5/7/12


On Monday, we snuck away and drove the 3 hours one way to go to LSBS just for the day. Conditions showed flat and I felt that getting in two fabulous dives would be better than risking 10 foot viz off Vero beach or Pepper Park.
We got up at 6:30 am, Rich packed the gear and I packed the cooler full of sandwiches, fruit and water. We had to stop at Hatt’s dive shop to pick up his BCD that was in for repair and they did not open till 7:30 am.
We arrived in Lauderdale by the Sea about 10:30. Dummy me, forgot the moisture munchers for the camera. Had to stop by Gold Coast to pick up some. but all in all, in the water by 11am. Did not see any others divers but it was flat, flat and just about high tide I think.
I am giving dive one an 8 conch rating and dive 2 a 2 conch rating. I will upload the conch later.

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The water looked flat and calm but there was a noticeable amount of silt and sediment floating around that you will see from the pictures and videos. We got two dives in but the second one in mid afternoon was scrubbed after about 30 minutes due to a leaking Reg and a massive under current to the North. It is remarkable to me how two hours difference can have substantially different dive conditions in the same location.
Entry and exit were not bad. Hubby Rich was gracious enough to carry my BCD up the shore and if I haven’t;t said it enough, I LOVE THIS GUY!
For dive one, we decided to head down two blocks from Datura and dive the less traveled area. I noticed that one of the Bio Rock buoys was missing from our last trip and a couple of reef marking buoys.

This area further south is less rocks and smaller coral spread out. There is an incredible variety of hard and soft corals. The gorgonian sea fans and sea whips were mammoth in this area. I did not see one lobster or eel in this area on this dive, however Rich said he saw 3 different sharptail eels I missed out on. I spotted a rather large dog snapper and there were many types of grunts flying by.
There were many spanish hogfish and we saw queen and french angelfish. For butterfly fish there were three different varieties I spotted; the banded butterfly fish, the four eye butterfly fish and the spotfin butterfly fish. Check out the video part of the spotfin, I had not noticed these where before. The adult spotfin is white with yellow dorsal, anal, and ventral fins, as well as the caudal peduncle and the bases of the pectoral and caudal fins. There is a yellow-edged black bar running down across the head through the eye, and a distinctive black spot at the rear-most tip of the soft dorsal fin. The snout is tinged with yellow. Occasionally there may be a rather large dark spot at the base of the soft dorsal fin extending down into a fainter dark bar that curves along the rear edge of the body. Nocturnally, this spot becomes black, broad dark bars may appear on its sides, and the small black dorsal spot may fade. The juvenile has a black bar curving down from the base of the soft dorsal fin along the rear body to the anal fin, and a translucent caudal fin. The adult grows to a length of 8 inches; the juvenile to 3 inches.

I saw two green sea turtles on the first dive. First time I got them on video and camera. YAY!!! I had a hard time spotting the first one, but rich chased him down for me to get on video. Notice the markings, 5 plates in the middle and 4 one each side of those. On the smaller juvie I caught feeding on my way back in to shore, notice the slight green tinge of the fat under skin, hence his name. The juvie to me had a marvelous coppery glow to him. He let me get very close and you will really get to checkout his marking around eyes, snout and even his sharp snout.

The usual reef fish were everywhere, much more than last dive a couple weeks ago. Plenty of parrotfish, trunkfish, porkfish, a gorgeous duo of french angelfish, nudibranchs and I even caught a trio of reef squid on camera and video. These creatures are super fast and very elusive. Another first for me, to add them to my catalog of pictures.

Today I am going to upload the turtle short video and also the pictures. I will upload a larger all in one video later this week but as that takes hours to compile, edit and produce, that will have to wait for now.
The usual reef fish were everywhere, much more than last dive a couple weeks ago. Plenty of parrortfish, trunkfish, juvie spotted drum, and nudibranchs. The spotted drum juvies are fascinating to me. Expect a write up in the future. These little graceful things look nothing like the adult versions.

I took a lot of pictures of the variety of coral so I could start cataloging types found in the Florida reefs. The sea whips and sea fans are looking great. Also, notice in many of the videos and pictures the tiny 1″ spots of coral just starting to grow in areas. This is a good sign for the reef. Plenty of tube coral and I think the starts of some elkhorn coral. Also the soft tree coral were everywhere, I used to think that many of the plant looking things were algae,sea plants or sponges but after doing the Coral 101 article, it has opened my eyes and I am enthralled. I am amazed at how many different types of coral I am seeing right off the cost in a shore dive! There is a fabulous picture where you can see the yellow polyps up close. I have to say from when I just went back over all the pictures, you will see my fascination with the coral. It seems what ever new creature I am featuring or recently research, jumps out at me in the ocean. There is a lot of first stage coral growth. Pay particular interest to the smaller blob in the backgrounds. If you focus, I think you will be amazed as well at how coral develops and grows. Also, I observed that the tube coral seems to attract shell creatures. One tube coral pic has a conch stuck inside and one of my videos has a wee shell friend climbing around. I shut the camera off right before he fell to the bottom. If you have any information on any of the coral in the pictures, feel free to comment or email me.

star coral polyp up close

star coral polyp up close


tube coral & conch

tube coral & conch

tube coral

tube coral

gorgonian soft coral (sea Fan)

gorgonian soft coral (sea Fan)

encrusted coral reef

encrusted coral reef

star or boulder coral

star or boulder coral

start of elkhorn or possibly fire coral

start of elkhorn or possibly fire coral

bright orange coral

bright orange coral

gorgonian soft coral sea whip

gorgonian soft coral sea whip

maze coral

maze coral

Lauderdale by the Sea coral reef

Lauderdale by the Sea coral reef

gorgonian soft coral - sea whip

gorgonian soft coral – sea whip


Today I am going to upload the turtle short video and also the pictures. I will upload a larger all in one video later this week but as that takes hours to compile, edit and produce, that will have to wait for now.
Last but not least, we tested Raw Elements All Natural Sunscreen that is supposed to be safe for reefs. watch for that update later in week.

There are also many little reef fish and some plainer less colorful Florida reef fish that I do not know much about. We saw an enormous school over two hundred of some small yellow fish, I need to find out what they are. Also Rich thinks he saw a school of juvie mangrove snapper. So stay tuned for that update.
I have been trying to title the pictures with the fish so anyone not familiar can get some quick info without having to do so much research.
I am going to study my pictures and hit my reef fish identification for Florida, Bahamas and Caribbean. I absolutely love and appreciate this cd. It was $55 well spent as I have got hours of information of it. I like this so much, I ordered some for the store. If you are looking for a great gift for a tropical scuba diver, I highly recommend it. I will have it in the sidebar here soon.

green sea turtle

green sea turtle

Enjoy the turtle vids, more to follow
Danielle’s Dive Blowing Bubbles with Green Sea Turtles off Lauderdale by the Sea

Short individual turtle vids posted on youtube.

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About daniellesdives

diving enthusiast
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