Fishies and phoneography

First off, a big WHOOHOO!!! for being included in The Daily Post’s phoneography favorites for March! The staff chose my “My Neighborhood” post to include in the roundup of their favorite entries. It always feel good to be recognized 🙂

Second: one good thing about working in an island resort is that the water is only a couple of meters away 🙂 Beat the summer heat this afternoon by diving our house reef. I used having to download my water temperature sensor data as an excuse. Heehee. That and I volunteered to take photos of one of our guests doing his Bubblemaker course 🙂 Aside from taking pictures of a 9-year-old during his first scuba experience, I also got to take some pretty good pictures of our resident bigeye scad (Selar crumenopthalmus). Swimming through a school of fish who totally ignored my presence was a surreal experience. I tried moving away so that I could take better wide-angle photos but nothing doing. The water was just too shallow and the school was just too big!

Fish in the light

Window through the darkness

Just might become one of my all-time favorite photos.

I said on Facebook that I wish I had extra-clear water for that perfect shot. Jayvee said that the water was already pretty clear. It was pretty clear but you could still see some backscatter. He said I should get strobes. I said he should give me the money for them 😛

Shark spotting in El Nido!

This post is going to be a wee bit emotional because OH MY GOD WE SPOTTED LOTS OF BLACKTIP REEF SHARKS WHILE SNORKELING!

An actual black tip reef shark!

This is a blacktip reef shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus). The blacktip reef shark is one of the most common sharks in the coastal areas of the Indo-Pacific. It (quite obviously) gets its name from the black tips on all of its fins. It feeds mostly on small bony fishes but also on squid, octopus, shrimp, sea snakes, and seabird chicks that fall into the water.

We spotted the sharks at low tide on a shallow reef here in El Nido. I’m not telling where exactly. Kuya Rey spotted the first shark within 10 minutes of us arriving at the snorkeling area. It was a small one but just seeing it was freaking awesome! We also found a group of 10 sharks of various sizes, with the largest at 1.5 meters. Oh yeah! Unfortunately, it turned out that we wore the wrong outfits to the party. Our rashguards were orange and red, in start contrast to the blue ocean and brown corals *facepalm*. The sharks swam away as soon as they spotted us. Next time I go snorkeling with sharks (tomorrow?), I’m wearing something blue or black.

Dive El Nido (part 2)

Also known as Entry to Ailsa’s “Oceans” Challenge Part 2. Here are three more photos from the past week of diving we did. I can finally sleep now!

The classic shot of the South Miniloc dive site in El Nido. “South Mini” is known for the field of foliose Turbinaria corals (AKA cabbage corals) and the school of yellow-lined snapper (Lutjanus lutjanus) hovering over it.
The yellow-lined snapper (Lutjanus lutjanus). They’re the main stars of South Mini. I wanted to change the white balance of this photo but unfortunately, the dial on my camera housing wasn’t working 🙁
Edu picked up a friend during the dive! This little golden trevally (Gnathanodon speciosus) followed us from 20 meters depth all the way back to the boat!

Hawksbill sea turtle in El Nido!

Today’s post was going to be one long entry for Ailsa’s “Oceans” photo challenge in honor of World Oceans Day. However, it’s going to take me some time to sort through my favorite photos taken during the past week so I figured I’d be better off making it a series of posts instead 🙂 Presenting the super friendly hawksbill sea turtle I met this morning in Abdeens Reef!

Diving. It’s awesome 😀

More photos will be up by tomorrow! (I hope. Haha.)

Hawksbill sea turtles on the beach

Just when I think of leaving, El Nido gives me a reason to stay. In this case, El Nido gave me 50 reasons.

Hawksbill sea turtle hatchling on the beach. Maybe he's waiting for the right wave.