A thieving two-spot octopus

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Posted by Merry on December 01, 2014 at 11:12:46:

The opportunity to witness and photograph marine life behavior can be rare. Even then, the behavior may be either mundane or over with before you can get a camera on it. But yesterday, a determined little octopus put on quite a show. It was so unexpected that most of the time, all I could do was watch, laugh, and marvel.

Visibility was so bad at Haggarty's Crane that we had to run a reel about 20 feet from the anchor to the crane. At some point, I snagged the line with my fin, and it dropped to the seafloor. No biggie, so I set about photographing something on a rock. Moments later, this two-spot octopus burst, yes, burst from its hole and glommed onto the bolt-snap of my reel. In a blink, it dragged as much of the contraption into its den as it could.

After I gently retrieved the reel, the octo went after it again! Since my presence didn't daunt its efforts, I brought Phil over for a look at my active little friend.

 photo Two-spotoctopusbright800bDSC_8672_zps933773ae.jpg

 photo Two-spotoctopusreelDSC_8668_zpsa67d3e6f.jpg

One of the crane's resident moray eels offering to be cleaned. Many of the cleaner shrimp were in the hole down around his tail.

 photo MorayeelCraneDSC_8704_zps7c76e1a2.jpg

Blue-banded goby hanging around the eel's home.
 photo Blue-bandedgobyDSC_8693_zps47626549.jpg

On Golf Ball Reef, Phil showed me a less than eyelash-size Doto amyra. I was barely able to get this beautiful nudibranch using a 105 mm lens and subsee +10 diopter. Wish it grew a tad larger here.

 photo DotoamyraDSC_8781_zps3ade4696.jpg

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