Filmed and edited by Yoeri: He has produced (underwater) films since 2003. Watch some of his films per geographical area in videography or explore his work on our YouTube channel. Finally, we have new camera equipment so there will be new videos in 2020 (Yoeri’s rage against the machines). You can either click on the links below or use the menu above for navigation.
Filmed and edited by Yoeri
Take a Minute
In this video series, we invite you to “Take a Minute” to relax and refresh your mind and soul with visual meditation. Take a 1-minute break from whatever you are doing to immerse yourself in the beauty of our blue planet. For this minute, Yoeri filmed and edited one long shot to allow you to fully focus on one creature, cultural site, land- or seascape. Dive into the scene, feel the energy, open your heart, connect to the subject, look for details and/or simply get carried away!
Be here now. Take this one minute to fully be there, instead of analysing the past or planning the future. It is quite interesting to see how long and relaxing one minute can be as soon as we stay in that moment – fully aware, fully present, fully relaxed. Observing one long scene, in contrary to the bombardment of pictures, news and fast cuts we are getting on a daily basis, helps to calm us down, to ground and centre us. Sometimes all it takes is 1 minute to recharge.
We love Indonesia – above and below the water. Therefore there’s more to come in this section.
For starters enjoy our first series of underwater videos in 2020 with Indonesia „Sulawesi Splendour“ where we’ll introduce you to some of the stunning reefs and marine life of the warm tropical waters surrounding the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. Being the 4th largest island in the Indonesian archipelago, Sulawesi has a rich cultural background and incredible biodiversity, both on land as well as underwater. Travel underwater from Lembeh (arguably the „Muck Diving Capital“ of the world) in the North to the beautiful coral atolls of Wakatobi in the South, also many places in between offer great diving opportunities.
Visayas, the Philippines
The Philippines are a tropical paradise, consisting of more than 7000 islands. More importantly, as part of the Coral Triangle, the Philippines offer some great diving. This particular trilogy of UW clips from 2015 will introduce you to the incredible diversity of marine life that call the Visayan reefs their home. Be prepared for lots of weird and wacky critters, as well as some of the usual suspects and seasonal visitors. Enjoy the kaleidoscope of shapes and colours that make the oceans such an interesting and fantastic place to be!
Long Island, The Andamans/India
A gorgeous island, far off the beaten track, in the middle of the remote Andaman Islands in the Indian Ocean. A place that time seems to have forgotten about. The islands offer extensive rainforests with unique flora and fauna, great scuba diving, spectacular remote beaches, friendly people, and even several indigenous tribes, some of which still refuse contact with the outside world. Blue Planet is the only resort/dive operator on Long Island, and although it feels like you’ve travelled to the end of the world, their friendly and kind staff will make you feel right at home! Back to basics. Even though we would have loved to explore and film so much more underwater the three clips give you an idea of this hidden paradise.
St. Eustatius/Caribbean Netherlands
These promotional clips for STENAPA (St Eustatius National Parks Foundation) show the natural and cultural beauties of this little gem in the Caribbean sea: Discover Statia on land, explore its underwater treasures and watch staff, volunteers and scientist of the marine park at work. Interesting? Check the volunteer programme for more information on how to get involved with the Statia Conservation Project.
More movies filmed and edited by Yoeri
All from our YouTube channel
Take a Minute XXIII : Harlequin Shrimp (Hymenocera elegans)In this first minute of relaxation of the new year, we’d like to focus your attention on this gorgeous, but voracious little hunter. A juvenile Harlequin Shrimp. There are two types of harlequin shrimp. ”Hymenocera elegans”, is native to the Indo-Pacific region, and “hymenocera picta”, which is specific to Hawaii. The name of the genus “Hymenocera” is derived from the Greek words “hymen” (membrane) and “keras” (horn, or in this case antennae), indicating that this crustacean has lamina-shaped antennae. Whereas both “elegans”, as well as “picta” refer to the beautiful coloured spots adorning the exoskeleton of this decapod.
They are reef dwellers, preferring water temperatures of 24-29 degrees Celcius, and are especially partial to a habitat with spaces for them to retreat into, like branched corals or rock formations. Their eyes are positioned on stalks, and they have two giant flat claws that serve as snipping tools while harvesting their prey. Females are generally larger than males and can grow up to around 5cm.
Harlequin shrimp are white to light pink in colour, with splashes of bright coloured spots on their entire body, usually red, purple, orange, and blue. Despite their relatively small size, they have few natural predators. This is thanks to their markings and colouration. Like on land, in the ocean bright patterns are a red flag to predators of toxicity. In addition, their colouration serves as a wonderful camouflage when moving along a coral reef, mimicking the bright lights and shadows produced by the overhead sun.
What’s curious about the Hymenocera is that they live almost exclusively on a diet of sea stars. Some have been observed munching on sea urchins, but generally speaking, sea stars are their comfort food. The harlequin shrimp has two flat antennae that are used for detecting the scent of sea star prey. They will often hunt as mating pairs, and work together to overtake and devour their prey. One shrimp will use its claws to clip the soft tube feet attaching the sea star to its surface, while the other then pulls the creature away from the surface and onto its back.
Some harlequin shrimp will then drag the sea star to its lair, and feed on its tube feet and soft tissues. Unable to right itself, the starfish will then endure being eaten alive for a period of days to weeks, depending on the size of the starfish. Harlequin shrimp have been observed feeding the starfish to keep it alive for their consumption.
Harlequin shrimp mate for life, and are fiercely protective of their family territory. Once the pair finds a suitable home within the reef, they are known to stay within the area for months or even years. The pair mate after the female moulds, and can produce anywhere from 100 to 5,000 eggs per breeding season. This may seem like a lot of offspring, but the high demand for harlequin shrimp in the aquarium trade has made them rarer in the wild.
Since Hymenocera has a symbiotic relation with corals, this isn’t exactly good news for coral reefs! Hymenocera preys on sea stars that would otherwise eat the corals, and in return for its efforts, it gets a safe place to live. Without the help of these little creatures, the future of the reef as a whole is at risk.
#underwater #relax #shrimp #TakeaMinute #diving #reef #travel #Indonesia #Bali #harlequinshrimp #savetheocean #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XXII : Soft Coral Cowrie (Primovula roseomaculata)In this episode of underwater relaxation, we would like to introduce you to this beautiful little Xmas creature that is dressed for the occasion. Primovula roseomaculata, also known as a Soft coral cowrie, Allied Cowrie, or False Cowrie, is a species of sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusc in the family Ovulidae.
Molluscs are a big and very diverse group of creatures consisting of animals as different as mussels and octopuses! Most colourful and strikingly patterned among the molluscs are the cowries. Their shells were used as currency in different cultures throughout history and are now prized collector items, due to their shining and often brightly coloured and patterned shell.
However, what we as ocean enthusiasts see, is not the shell itself, but rather the soft mantle of the animal, wrapped around the shell. The mantle is even more beautiful than the shell itself, often bearing a striking resemblance to the soft coral that these cowries prey on, even including tentacle-like protrusions, to completely blend in with its coral host. These branching papillae on their mantle are not only there to complete the finishing touch on their extravagant camouflage, but assist in the respiration of the cowrie as well.
Primovula roseomaculata usually live and feed on soft corals of the genus Dendronephtya. Due to the potent toxins used by these corals to deter predators, these cowries have adapted to only a single coral species. This behaviour has led to the rise of one of their common names, the “Allied Cowrie”. However, “Allied cowries” are in fact parasites, that harm their hosts. They feed on the coral’s tissues, mucus and polyps, and are able to absorb the pigments of their coral host, which enables these cowries to match their host's colour so well. Not only that, but Primovula roseomaculata has the ability to even extract the defensive chemicals of the coral host, and store them in the skin of its own mantle, where they can protect the snail from fish predation! The host coral will continually regrow the lost tissue, so the cowrie never runs out of food, and or ammo!
They start off their lives as free-swimming post-larval juveniles and probably detect chemical clues that signal a potential host is nearby. Hosts are often home to several individuals. When settled, cowries graze up and down the coral and eventually deposit their eggs on a bare branch, beginning the cycle all over again.
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #travel #Xmas #softcoral #Indonesia #lembeh #Softcoralcowrie #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Don't Drink and DiveWe wanted to wish everyone a very nice Xmas, and good health, lots of love and prosperity for the coming year!
We understand that for most of us, it’s been a year of……. Well, disappointments mainly. Not quite how we expected this landmark year of 2020 to be … Perhaps it was a lesson we needed to learn. That instead of focussing on what we want, we become more aware of what we have. Especially now with renewed demoralizing lock-downs taking place around the world, it is critical to send some positive energy towards the coming year, and an effort to see the advantages of these life-limiting measures.
For example, there will be less “drunk driving” incidents, from people attending Xmas parties! The accompanying video is a reminder of how we lost our beloved friend Francois du Frogfish in 2018 after he attended the company’s Xmas party….
#Xmas #drinkanddive #frogfish #live2021 #diving #Philippines #travel #ocean #underwater #drink #drinkanddrive #2020 #endof2020 #drunk #drunkdriving
Take a Minute XXI : Coconut Octopus (Amphioctopus marginatus)In this minute of relaxation, we invite you to look deep into the eyes of this beautiful creature and let it take you on a journey through time and space. Amphioctopus marginatus, also known as the “coconut octopus” and “veined octopus”, is a medium-sized cephalopod belonging to the genus Amphioctopus. Meeting any octopus is as close as we can currently get to an alien encounter. Their physiology is truly otherworldly!
They have a large brain that extends into the nervous system of their arms! Which means that its brain is not in 1 particular place, as with most other creatures, but has more of a “Multiverse” approach to brain function.
Lacking skeletal support, this creature’s arms work as muscular hydrostats and contain longitudinal, transverse and circular muscles around a central axial nerve. Which basically means that they can extend/contract their arms, twist left or right, bend at any place in any direction and/or be held rigid. Each arm has a multitude of muscle controlled suction cups, that can grab, feel, manipulate, and even taste objects. Octopuses are basically “brains with arms”, or “thinking muscles”, that can control their bodies to such an extent, that they’ll fit through any opening the size of their beak. The parrot-like beak of all octopus species contain venomous saliva and is the only hard part of their bodies.
Octopuses, as well as some other cephalopods, are capable of greater RNA editing (which involves changes to the nucleic acid sequence of the primary transcript of RNA molecules) than any other organism. More than 60% of RNA transcripts for their brains are re-coded by editing, compared to less than 1% for that of a human’s. This allows the octopus to evolve/adapt/learn from the experiences of previous generations, without actually being taught.
Octopuses have 3 hearts and depend on the copper-rich protein, haemocyanin, for oxygen transport throughout the body. Although in cold conditions and with low oxygen levels, haemocyanin transports oxygen more efficiently than haemoglobin, it also tends to make the blood thicker, resulting in blood pressures that can exceed 75 mmHg (10 kPa). But, with 3 hearts, the octopus isn’t really worried about high blood pressure. As an added bonus, the haemocyanin makes the octopus’s blood look blue-ish. True royalty!
Named for their use of coconuts as tools for defence, the coconut octopus can also use clamshells, or these days a variety of plastic rubbish, depending on their size. Although they have the ability to burrow and hide in the sand, they prefer the extra security these tools are giving them. Often the shells and husks that the coconut octopus gathers, will be used for dens or “defensive fortresses”.
Amphioctopus marginatus is even capable of bipedal (2 legged) movement and slit-walking, which allows them to carry the coconut or clamshells, with the remaining 6 arms. The octopus will carry a shell with it while searching for another, testing several as it scavenges as a hermit crab might. Coconut octopuses are commonly found throughout the tropical Pacific and the Indian Ocean. Their main body is normally around 8 centimetres (3”) tall and including the arms, approximately 15 centimetres (6”) long.
Their diet includes invertebrates such as shrimp, crabs and clams, although they will also eat small fish if they can catch them. With three to five years the coconut octopus has one of the longer life spans for octopuses. The primary contributing factor to determining their life span is when they decide to mate. The coconut octopus reaches sexual maturity between 18 and 24 months of age. Once a male mates he will die within weeks, sometimes days thereafter. The female will die only after she has laid her eggs and they have hatched.
The mating ritual of the coconut octopus is a “fast and furious” affair. Males prefer to insert their sperm packet with their specialized “sex arm” into the mantle of the female as quickly as possible. It has been observed in the wild that the females often strangle the males that hang around too long, and then eat them. Not quite the preferred dinner date... To avoid being eaten, male coconut octopuses employ the “mate and dash” technique. Some also disguise themselves as females in order to stand a chance while approaching.
Since the mating style of the coconut octopus is designed to be as fast and as distant as possible, there have been observations of a female octopus “entertaining” two or more male suitors at once. Yes, a saucy coconut octopus underwater orgy, so to say. Since the female carries the sperm packets in her mantle until she is ready to lay her eggs, having sperm packets from multiple males is not a problem. Consequently, the hatchlings that emerge from a specific brood can have multiple fathers. What a fascinating alien creature this octopus is!
#coconutoctopus #lembeh #underwater #relax #arms #TakeaMinute #suckers #mating #brain #octopus #Indonesia #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute to Fly - Schloss NordkirchenSchloss Nordkirchen is a castle/palace situated in the town of Nordkirchen in the Coesfeld administrative district in the state of North-Rhine Westphalia, near the city of Münster, in north-west Germany. The present Baroque Schloss is the successor to a fully moated Wasserschloss built in the sixteenth century for the noble "von Morrien" family. The structure we see today was largely built between 1703 and 1734 and is known as the "Versailles of Westphalia" since it is the largest of the fully or partly moated Wasserschloss in that region. It was originally one of the residences of the Prince-Bishopric of Münster.
In 1959, the Schloss was purchased by the State of North-Rhine Westphalia and has since been the site of "Fachhochschule für Finanzen Nordrhein-Westfalen" (recognized University of Applied Sciences of Finances North-Rhine Westphalia), a state-run college specializing in the training of future tax inspectors. So it basically functions as a “Hogwarts” of “Mordor” these days.
The neighbouring "Oranienburg" complex and the park were subsequently added, as was the deer park (2004), which included a generous green belt of more than 1,000 hectares of woodland surrounding the south-western perimeter of the property.
The garden front gives entry to a landscaped park of some 170 hectares, reached through a formal parterre of scrolling broderie on-axis, flanked by expanses of lawn. In the gardens and the surrounded woods, one can find a multitude of life-size marble statues, of which the first deliveries were made in 1721 by the Munich sculptor Johann Wilhelm Gröninger. Other sculptures were delivered by Panhoff and Charles Manskirch.
Despite the “tax evil” that currently lurks at this location, it is a beautiful place to walk around and enjoy the sights.
#schlossnordkirchen #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #aerial #castle #VersaillesofWestphalia #Germany #palace #Westphalia #wasserschloss #fly #wideangle #DJI #Mavic2Pro
Take a Minute XX : Yellow pygmy goby (Lubricogobius exiguus)The star of this week’s episode of “Take a Minute” goes by many names, of which "Yellow pygmy goby" is just one. Since the name so perfectly describes this creature, I could’ve probably just left that… Anyway, Lubricogobius exiguus is a member of the family of Gobiidae. This family is tremendously large, comprising of over 2000 species in more than 200 genera, spread over 6 subfamilies. And yet none of them can be considered big. This cute little creature can grow to a maximum size of about 4cm. They prefer to inhabit muddy substrates, usually with rocky outcrops of rubble and/or debris, and can often be found in pairs, living in empty shells, holes, or in between the branches of hard coral, like Acropora, that provide them with a safe place for their eggs, as well as themselves.
Lubricogobius exiguus is one of those species that seems to have made the best of a bad situation, by seeing the ever-increasing amount of man-made rubbish coming into the ocean, as new real estate opportunities! These days, this species can often be found in discarded bottles, cans, and other trash with small openings. They feed on a variety of algae, plankton, and small invertebrates. This particular species of bright yellow fish doesn’t exactly blend into it’s preferred habitat of drabby dark colours. Thereby creating a contrast that seems irresistible to underwater photographers, and “critter enthusiasts” alike.
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #travel #mindful #soul #Indonesia #lembeh #Yellowpygmygoby #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XIX : Moon-headed sidegill slug (Euselenops luniceps)In this minute of relaxation, we’d like to focus your attention on a curious looking sea creature digging in the sand, named the “Moon-headed sidegill slug” (Euselenops luniceps).
Euselenops luniceps is a species of sea slug, a pleurobranchomorph gastropod mollusc in the family Pleurobranchaeidae. This family of sea slugs is known as "side-gilled slugs", since they have their gills hidden on the right side of the body under the mantle (the body edge). This slug is perfectly adapted for living in a sandy environment. In most pleurobranchs, the foot and mantle are of similar size but in Euselenops the foot is much larger, which makes it easier to crawl over sand, or burrowing underneath it. Posterior, the mantle folds into a relatively long siphon or tube, which allows the mantle cavity and gills to remain in contact with fresh seawater while the animal is buried in the sand. With the incoming seawater the animal can also sense chemical released by potential prey nearby. It has a large oral veil fringed with lots of sensory 'hairs' on the underside to detect prey. This unique looking creature roams along sandy and silty sea bottoms for food with a very pronounced large oral veil, which underneath is fringed with tiny sensory "hairs" (papillae), to help it detect prey. Although it is a predator, little is known about what it eats. It appears they have a particular fondness for anemones, however they have also been observed on sand flats at low tide, where they hunt and swallow whole any invertebrates that they touch with their large oral veil. While most sea slugs move quite slowly, Euselenops with their active food gathering approach, can move surprisingly fast. Not only does it have speed, this slug can actually swim for some distance by flapping the sides of its body, much in the same way as its more famous cousin, the “Spanish Dancer” (Hexabranchus sanguineus) does.
Despite the fact that many websites claim the maximum size of this creature is approximately 7cm, this particular specimen filmed in Amed (Bali), was closer to 20cm.
We hope you’ll enjoy your Minute with this weird and wonderful creature...
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #travel #conservation #Euselenopsluniceps #Indonesia #bali #nature #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute to Fly: Heerener HolzWe are aware that the fading light and diminishing sun hours if it's still measured in hours are having a profound effect on our psyche. Combine that with the uncertainties this year has brought forth, and we understand that people might feel a little bit down at the moment. However, there's still beauty everywhere... And if there's beauty in fall, there's hope for the future!
Enjoy this flight over the shaking treetops of a German forest in the high winds of autumn.
"Heerener Holz" is a natural reserve (Naturschutzgebiet) close to the city of Kamen in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany.
#autumn #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #aerial #forest #travel #Germany #fall #savetheplanet #fly #wideangle #DJI #Mavic2Pro #treetops
Take a Minute XVIII : Round Batfish (Platax orbicularis)In this minute of visual meditation, we invite you to glide with a school of round batfish over a beautiful reef in Wakatobi. To avoid confusion with the other batfish of the family Ogcocephalidae, members of the group known as anglerfish, these round batfish are often referred to as spadefish, or platax.
The body of Platax orbicularis is almost disc-shaped, and very thin. Its tail, about 20% of the body length, is fan-shaped and is taller than it is long. Males can grow to up around 50 cm (20 inch) in length. This species has a wide range that extends from the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, all the way to the Pacific Ocean. They have been recorded off the coast of Florida as well, although this is thought to be the result of dumping of aquarium specimens.
These fish can be found singly, in small groups, and occasionally in large schools around reefs and wrecks, at depths ranging from 5-30 meters. Small juveniles are yellowish to reddish-brown and resemble leaves drifting amongst flotsam at the surface or moving along the bottom in the current. Platax orbicularis normally feeds on algae, invertebrates and small fishes, but has been known to spice their diet up at times with the occasional anemone.
What is lesser known, is that this species is a singer! Though their calls are not quite as melodic, as say that of birds, they are certainly diverse. Like with birds, their choruses occur mostly at sunrise or sunset, and sometimes both. Why they perform these serenades is still up for debate, but their songs seem to have a distinct staccato beat to them. Although the acoustic abilities of certain fish species still needs further research, the benefits of it are pretty clear. Singing offers considerable advantages as it means the fish can communicate at night, when predators can’t see them, and due to the density of the water, it allows them to communicate over long distances and bring animals together for spawning events. All species of fish can make sounds, but only some can sing. This evolutionary talent occurs in the‘swim bladder’, a large bubble of gas inside most fish that is used to control their buoyancy. Singing fish can control the muscles of their swim bladder, driving it to create sound. This makes Platax orbicularis an even more interesting creature, than it already was.
Enjoy your swim with these beautiful shiny, silvery, musical fish.
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #coralreef #travel #Indonesia #wakatobi #savetheocean #reefprotection #wideangle #roundbatfish #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XVII - Squat Shrimp (Thor amboinensis)Our creature of interest in this one-minute episode of visual meditation goes by many names. Squat shrimp, anemone shrimp, dancing shrimp, sexy shrimp, just to name a few. Thor ambionensis has a maximum body length of 13 millimetres. Their base body colour varies from red/orange to light brown, and even green. They have irregular blue/white circular marks on the body. In the centre of these marks, there are yellow lines and dots. On the brown coloured specimens, the colours in the centre of these marks are slightly different. There are two or sometimes three similar coloured bands around the tail area and the tail fan has similar coloured markings on the top and the bottom. There are three sets of walking legs and a set of legs with small pincers known as chelipeds and a proportionally longer set of feelers. They have a habit of holding their abdomen above their head and wagging the tail giving them one of their common names.
Though it is named after Ambon, or Amboyna Island, one of the Maluku Islands in Indonesia, Thor amboinensis has a pantropical distribution and can be found in the Red Sea, the Indian Ocean, the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico, and even at the Atlantic islands of Madeira and the Canaries. They prefer to live in a symbiotic relationship with anemones, but when none are around, can also be found in certain species of corals.
Living among the tentacles of their preferred host, the voracious anemone offers them a safe home from which they can feed on tentacle tissue, as well as on the mucus-trapped planktonic particles adhering to it.
The female Thor amboinensis carries the fertilised eggs under her abdomen until they are ready to hatch. The zoea larvae pass through several stages and, before undergoing a metamorphosis, are attracted by both chemical and visual cues which cause them to settle near potential host anemones. Researchers found that the larvae of Thor amboinensis were generalists, being attracted by and accepting several different species of anemone as hosts. In some experiments, they had a preference for the species of anemone from which the parent shrimp had been collected.
It’s always fun to spend some time with these little fellows and watch them dance around, shaking that booty.
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #reef #travel #Indonesia #Bali #squatshrimp #savetheocean #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XVI: Halimeda ghost pipefish (Solenostomus halimeda)The guest star in this Minute of visual meditation is the Halimeda ghost pipefish (Solenostomus halimeda). The name of this creature is derived from the Greek words soleno, meaning tube-like, and stoma, meaning mouth. Whereas the word “Halimeda” comes from the green calcareous algae, in which this creature can most often be found.
Although they’re closely related to pipefishes and seahorses of the family Syngnathidae, they differ from Syngnathids in both structure and behaviour. Instead of armoured rings, ghost pipefish are covered with large bony plates. They tend to swim upside down through their preferred habitat, which makes them very difficult to spot. Feeding on tiny crustaceans, especially mysids, which are rapidly sucked in through the long tubular snout, ghost pipefish are ambush predators, that stealthily approach their unsuspecting prey from above, in this head-down position.
Unlike Syngnathids, where the males take care of the fertilised eggs in a special pouch, with Solenostomidea it’s the female who carries the eggs in a brood pouch formed by the fusion of her pelvic fins, which are continuously fanning fresh water over the eggs. Most species of ghost pipefish spent a relatively long period floating around in the ocean as plankton, reaching almost adult length before they finally settle onto the reef. This means that they have a wide geographic range since they can travel long distances after they are born. However, since they only spend the adult/reproductive part of their lives on the reef, it also means that divers have a very short time frame to find this creature in a particular spot before they disappear. This time frame is no doubt made even shorter by the large number of predators inhabiting the reefs.
They're generally found living in pairs with the smaller, skinnier of the two male and the larger individual, with bigger fins the female. The Halimeda ghost pipefish is with its maximum of 7 cm, the smallest of the 6 scientifically recognized species of Solenostomidea. As their name suggests, they’re to be found among Halimeda algae growing on the reef. The head of a Halimeda ghost pipefish is almost equal to the length of the body. Their rounded fins are perfectly resembling the growth segments of the Halimeda algae it prefers to inhabit. The species is highly variable in colour (from bright green or red to white) and is sometimes covered with fine filaments that give the fish a 'hairy' appearance.
A very special little critter that is worth spending some time with. Should one be fortunate enough to come across one ...
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #reef #travel #Indonesia #Bali #halimedaghostpipefish #savetheocean #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XV: Trumpetfish (Aulostomus chinesis)In this session of our visual meditation series, we'd like to bring the Trumpetfish, in this case, Aulostomus chinesis, to your attention. Their scientific name "Aulostomus" is derived from the Greek words for flute (aulos), and mouth (stoma). Looking at the creature, one can sort of understand how they got to this name.
Worldwide there are 3 species of Trumpetfishes, namely A. maculatus which can be found in the Caribbean Sea and Northern parts of South America. A. strigosus, which inhabits the Atlantic coastal waters of Africa and South America. And lastly, the leading actor of this episode, A. chinesis, which lives in the Indo-Pacific region.
Trumpetfish are easily recognizable by their long elongated bodies and long heads with compressed snouts. At the tip of these elongated snouts, is a single prominent barbell, which can be used for defence. Their dorsal and anal fins are small, reduced, and set very far back on the fish’s body, lending an almost snake-like appearance. Their dorsal fins are preceded by twelve dorsal spines, and the caudal (tail) fin is small and highly rounded. All of these adaptations have led to the fact that the Trumpetfish is not a great swimmer.
They like to inhabit the seagrass beds, coral reefs and reef flats of the tropical and sub-tropical waters in their particular areas, where they can be found in areas with abundant vertical structures, like whip corals, sponges, and fan corals, in which they can easily blend in. From these places of concealment, they hunt for small fish and crustaceans, usually approaching their prey slowly from above, in a vertical manner. They have also been known to use larger fish, or even divers, as camouflage in their search for food. Although most of their food consists of small prey, they have been known to occasionally dine on larger fish as well, like grunts and surgeonfish. When hunting, Trumpetfish are able to open their mouths wider than the diameter of its own body, facilitated by elastic mouth tissues, creating a vacuum that sucks the prey into the fishes mouth.
The intricacies of Trumpetfish reproduction are not well studied, but it is known that they use their chromatophore colour changing abilities to conduct elaborate mating display rituals. These courtship rituals occur near the surface, then, as in their close relatives the seahorses, the burden of caring for the eggs is given to the male, who fertilizes them and carries them in a special pouch until they hatch.
What an amazing creature!
#smile #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #body #mind #soul #trumpetfish #Indonesia #Bali #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam #underwater
Take a Minute XIV: Longhorn cowfish (Lactoria cornuta)In this episode of visual meditation, we'd like to introduce you to the Longhorn Cowfish (Lactoria cornuta). This curious-looking creature has 2 spine-like horns growing from the front of its head, and 2 more from the back of its body. These make it harder for any would-be predator to swallow them. Their body has plate-like scales that are fused together to form a solid box-like carapace and the fins, tail, eyes, and mouth protrude from this. Due to their armour, these fish are slow-moving and rely on their pectoral fins for propulsion.
Cowfish are closely related to Pufferfish, and although they don't have the ability to puff themselves up, they do have a symbiotic relationship with types of toxic bacteria similar to the Pufferfish. These bacteria produce ostracitoxin which is a powerful neurotoxin. The ostracitoxin’s are found in their skin and internal organs. In addition to being poisonous, they have the ability to secrete the ostracitoxins into the water when stressed. This acts as a chemical defence when they are attacked by predators.
To the dismay of many an aquarist who thought this funny looking creature would be a great addition to their tank, when stressed the Longhorn Cowfish is capable of killing every fish in an aquarium, including itself. An unfortunate case of murder-suicide, that once again shows us that creatures should not be imprisoned for our own entertainment.
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #night #travel #Indonesia #Bali #reefprotection #cowfish #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XIII: Berry's or hummingbird bobtail squid (Euprymna berry)A very warm welcome to another session of "Take a Minute" to relax. Dive right into our visual meditation and watch this adorable creature in all its glory for one minute. Hummingbird bobtail squids, also known as Berry's bobtail squids (Euprymna berry) grow only up to 3 cm (male) and 5 cm (female). During the day they stay buried in the ground and come out to hunt at night.
Bobtail squids have 2 tentacles and 8 suckered arms and also possess a special light organ, where bioluminescent bacteria lives in a symbiotic relationship. Fed by sugar and amino acids, they hide the silhouette of the squid when viewed from below by matching the amount of light hitting the top of the mantle. Counter-illumination is one of the methods of camouflage used in the animal kingdom.
In the case of the little guy (maybe 2.5 cm), it didn't keep those pesky divers away and so it buried itself again. Please, never stress them by forcing them back out again. That's part of reef protection. Respect nature - below and above the surface!
Clip series: Take a Minute In this video series, we invite you to “Take a Minute” to relax and refresh your mind and soul with visual meditation. Take a 1-minute break from whatever you are doing to immerse yourself in the beauty of our blue planet. For this minute, Yoeri selects one long shot to allow you to fully focus on one creature, cultural site, land- or seascape. Dive into the scene, feel the energy, open your heart, connect to the subject, look for details or simply get carried away! Be here now. Take this one minute to fully be there, instead of analysing the past or planning the future. It is quite interesting to see how long and relaxing one minute can be as soon as we stay in that moment - fully aware, fully present, fully relaxed. Observing one long scene, in contrary to the bombardment of pictures, news and fast cuts we are getting on a daily basis, helps to calm us down, to ground and centre us. Sometimes all it takes is 1 minute to recharge. We start off with underwater shots because diving is our form of active meditation. Underwater we find happiness in the present moment. There are so many healing and soothing factors to the ocean. There is so much we love about diving and nature.
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #night #travel #Indonesia #Lembeh #reefprotection #squid #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam
Take a Minute XII: Pink eye gobiesIn this episode of underwater meditation, we would like to introduce you to "Bryaninops natans". These members of the large family of Gobiidae, are better known as the "Hovering -, or Pink Eye Gobies". This rather aptly named creature can grow to a maximum size of around 2,5 cm, and seem to prefer living in Acropora hard corals, that offer them some shelter from predators. They can be found hovering above these corals in groups, as they dart backwards and forwards to catch their food in the passing currents.
These small fish are fairly widely spread throughout the tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific and have even been found in the Red Sea. These interesting gobies have translucent bodies, not just as juveniles but for their entire lives! It is therefore only natural to see this remarkable feature is rewarded with some bright yellow insides, which really compliments the colour of their eyes. 🙂
Nature can be so entertaining. Studies have shown, that Pink Eye Gobies are not suffering from conjunctivitis, as was previously suspected. As it turns out, when most of one's body is transparent, one resorts to some drastic measures with the few remaining visible parts one has left. In the end, it's all about creating the right look...
#underwater #relax #meditation #TakeaMinute #diving #reef #travel #Indonesia #Bali #pinkeyegobies #acropora #macro #PanasonicLumix #GH5s #Nauticam