Denizen of the Deep

I had never dived Nelson Bay before last weekend and as we geared up in the dark at Fly Point for the high tide dive I was acutely aware that I really should dive here in the daylight first.

The moment we submerged though I caught sight of my first nudibranch for the dive, then another and another. In a short span of time I had seen more nudibranchs and a greater variety of nudibranch species than in all of my many years of diving.

I encountered this denizen of the (not so) deep, Dendrodoris denisoni, about 60 minutes into one of the most amazing night dives I have experienced. I could not have asked for a better pose as the nudibranch perched itself atop a piece of structure with its antler-like rhinophores fully extended and rear branchial plume waving in the current.

The remainder of the dive at Fly Point was filled with more nudibranchs, wobbygong sharks, octopuses, gobbleguts and a myriad of fishes.

After this very first dive at Nelson Bay I knew I was in nudibranch heaven!

Photo: Robert Rath, ‘Denizen of the Deep’, 1/100s f/22 ISO400 100mm

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