Buchannan's/Avalon/Barge - Labor Day w/e + pictures

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Posted by jlyle on September 05, 2005 at 19:01:19:

Diving, Labor Day weekend, in sunny Southern California, priceless!

Scott had to work on Saturday, so we didn't take the boat out until Sunday. Scott, Margaret, and I did one dive at Buchannan's Reef, near Old Marineland, and then moved around the peninsula to the wreck of the Avalon. Surface water was brown, but at depth, Visibility was a good twenty+ feet and the water was 57 degrees. On Labor Day, we went back to Buchannan's and then did our second dive on the "barge" off Redondo Beach.

Below are some images from this holiday weekend:

Gopher rockfish (Sebastes carnatus)

Coralline sculpin (Artedius corallinus)

Jaba the Hut? Cabezon (Scorpaenichthys marmoratus)

Menage a trois? Triopha catalinae

The Odd Couple? California sea cucumber (Pachythyone rubra) & Peltodoris nobilis

Coonstripe shrimp (Pandalus gurneyi)

There may be something to the link between man-made estrogen-like compounds in the water and strange behavior! I found these sea stars acting very strangely!!!!

This is the year for simnia snails (Delonololva aequalis)! After looking for them for years, I am finding them on almost every dive. They eat red gorgonia, so how hard can it be to find them? Well, first off they are tiny, less than 1/2 inch long. Secondly, although they show up vividly in a photograph, they are very hard to see without artificial light.

Not only is this the year of the simnia, they are laying eggs! I found several in the process of depositing egg sacks on the stems of the red gorgonia that they feed on.

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