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Friday, October 21, 2016

Diving with Coconut Octopus and other cool creatures

Leaving Raja Ampat I took the plane to Manado in North Sulawesi and from there a car and boat to the beautiful small island Sahaung, just South of Bangka Island. Sahaung is home to Blue Bay Divers and offers a real small island feeling with nice beach side bungalows and a relaxed atmosphere.

The first dive already showed the potential of the area. We saw a small Harlequin Shrimp, several Giant Frogfish, a Pygmy Seahorse and much more.

The dive sites were very varied. Sandy areas for pure muck diving, walls with current for drift diving and nice corral fields. On one memorable wall dive we spotted two Painted Frogfish on a wall, one of them chased after my camera!

Whenever possible I joined the night dive, because there was even more going on than during the day. On one dive I encountered two Bobtail Squids and one showed off it's whole color palette. (You can also see the krill in the picture, which was plentiful and sometimes a bit annoying ;) ).

On another night we encountered multiple smaller Coconut Octopi. One of them found shelter in a small snail shell.

Another used two halves of a clam, which he carried with him when we got to close, to finally retreat in their middle.

On the last day we visited Batu Sahaung, a stony reef just around the corner, which is covered in Soft Coral in all colors! I have never seen so many differently colored Soft Coral in such a small space before. It was simply beautiful!

With so much diving one day merged into the next and then it was suddenly time to continue to the next spot. I had a great experience and am looking forward to return one day!

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