Breaking News. Diver Merry Is Back!

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Posted by Max Bottomtime on July 12, 2017 at 18:10:29:

 photo MerryGiantStride_zpsowonsq2i.jpg

Our long national nightmare is over. Merry Passage has returned to diving. She had been on the disabled list for six months following a tragic accident involving a dock cleat and her baby toe. Recovery time was longer than expected and it was taking a heavy toll on her.

She used the time off to organize her photos and videos from the past decade into a wonderful collection geared toward divers and biologists looking for identifications and a bit of education along with it. Her new site is http://www.divermerry.com/

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Does this shirt make me look young?

After an aborted dive yesterday we returned to the water off Palos Verdes early this morning. Once again the sea was flat but visibility was poor and it was dark on the reefs. Our first stop was Halfway Reef. Merry finally got to see the Bispira turneri worm that Kevin Lee and I had been photographing for a few months.

The usual critters were out, but there was one big surprise to be had. Last year Merry found a Thordisa rubescens at Golf Ball Reef. There had been less than a handful of sightings before that. We later found several more including mating pairs and a few laying eggs. We found the motherload, but they were only found at GBR...until today. I found one laying eggs at Halfway Reef a few miles away from Golf Ball Reef. That means there is at least one more in the area.

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8449_zpsukkhci1u.jpg
Thordisa rubescens laying eggs

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8445_zpsuqv3ytel.jpg
Semicossyphus pulcher, Sheephead, with mottled night-time coloration

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8436_zpsxzmzs8bz.jpg
Navanax inermis

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8454_zpsmm3k12hf.jpg
Navanax eggs

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8418_zpstm2dbm3r.jpg
Bispira turneri

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8435_zpsv0mqfuhv.jpg
Peltodoris nobilis

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8438_zpsr8ogwot7.jpg
Polycera tricolor

 photo Halfway Reef_ART8424_zpsbezqfsza.jpg
Clathria Parthena, Red Beard sponge

At Golf Ball Reef for our second dive I found another Thordisa on the rock I found last Sunday loaded with eggs and three of the large, red nudis. Merry isn't the only one making a big comeback.

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8516_zpsrourwyzd.jpg
Thordisa rubescens

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Yhordisa rubescens eggs

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8485_zpsumizw9dy.jpg
Berthella californica

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8487_zpsz0nmhsf0.jpg
Berthella californica mating pair with nearby egg coil. Notice the gills of each nudibranch extended.

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8459_zpsplsqxxdi.jpg
Doriopsilla albopunctata mating pair

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8457_zps5dtmwysj.jpg
Acanthodoris hudsoni mating pair

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8517_zpsuh4puuyz.jpg
Peltodoris mullineri

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8470_zpskjipaxg4.jpg
Scorpaena guttata, California scorpionfish

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8499_zps9acwthmv.jpg

 photo Golf Ball Reef_ART8505_zpsi5h1yfg3.jpg
Rathbunella hypoplecta, Bluebanded Ronquil

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  • Awesome WMarti 19:33:19 07/13/17 (0)

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