Underwater Photos

Iridescent Jelly
Thursday, August 29, 2013
Iridescent Jelly

This amazing little creature is a Comb Jelly. The lights in rows on the side of his body are rows of tiny cilia (tiny movable hair like structures). But the light does not come from bioluminescence, the cilia are like tiny little prisms refracting the ambient light as the jelly waves the cilia to move through the water. The resulting wave of small rainbows is quite a show.


Leafy Sea Dragon
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Leafy Sea Dragon

This guy is one of my favorite sea creatures. He's called a Leafy Sea Dragon. He's related to seahorses and pipe fish, and is from the waters of Australia. This one is living at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in their cool Seahorse exhibit. As I'm sure you can guess he is less of a sea monster than his name suggests. His beautiful fins camouflage him in the sea weed as he floats with the ocean surge like a plant.

This was the second time we tried to get to the exhibit, right after it opened in April it was almost too crowded to see anything, but this weekend was much less crowded.


Clams of Monterey
Saturday, January 31, 2009
Clams of Monterey

We came to Monterey this weekend to meet a friend and his son at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. It was a fun day, but very tiring. I've been there many times but somehow I must have missed the giant clams before. They are quite interesting.

April sixth the Aquarium will be opening a new exhibit on Seahorses in the space where the large Jellyfish display went away last year. I was really disappointed when the jellyfish were leaving, but I don't think they could have picked anything much better to replace them if they had to go! And it will be just in time for my birthday too!!


Tentacles in the Sand
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Tentacles in the Sand

This is one of the first shots with my underwater housing for my camera. I've had it for a while and have not had a chance to use it. The extremely low tides this week were a good opportunity to go wading through the tidal pools taking pictures. 'Course, the water was so shallow they were all extreme close ups, but that's just fine with me.

These guys are really beautiful, they are related to jelly fish, but they stay on the bottom, usually anchored to a rock under the sand. The pretty colors come from a symbiotic algae living in their translucent tissues.


Mediterranean Jelly
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Mediterranean Jelly

This is another critter from the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Ahh, vacations are so short and so many days between! The light was very blue, he is actually more brown from what I read about him.


Nice Hat!
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Nice Hat!

I really enjoyed the Monterey Bay Aquarium, so I had to drag my wife to the closest thing we have in Santa Barbara, the Ty Warner Sea Center. The scale is not really comparable, but the people there are really nice and they have some cool hands on things you can do. Since they are out on Stearns Wharf, they can actually drop experiments down through a big hole in the floor.

Right now the Sea Center has a "Camouflage" display including all kinds of critters that are good at hiding. I don't think this guy was actually part of that display, but he was doing his best with that nice collection of sea-weed. The nice blue background was my wife's idea. She offered to stand behind the aquarium in her nice blue shirt.


Moon Jellies
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Moon Jellies

Today was a great day, saw some jellies ate some good food and found out that Monterey was close enough to make a good day trip. in the past we have always stayed a lot longer.

These guys were amazing and the display was fantastic. They are in a small hallway with mirrors on the ends and both walls of the hall are floor to ceiling aquariums. It makes you feel like you are completely submerged in a school of graceful jellyfish.

Oh, one more thing, if you do go to Monterey and stay in a hotel. Be sure to purchase your aquarium tickets at the hotel. You will get a two day pass for the same price as one day at the Aquarium and you wont have to wait in the long ticket line at the door. You can go right in the side entrance.


Shimmering Jelly
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Shimmering Jelly

Well we raced off to Monterey to see the Jellyfish before they went away. And they were well worth the four and a half hour drive. If you are going to be there before the end of this weekend I highly recommend you check them out. The show is "Jellies: Living Art" and in addition to the jellies they have some beautiful art that was inspired by the gracefulness of the jellyfish.

Of course if you can't get there by Sunday, they still have plenty of other amazing things to see. And I'm pretty sure they will still have some jellies, just not the big display. But I would imagine they are planning something interesting for the spot that they will be vacating.


Creatures from the deep
Monday, September 8, 2008
Creatures from the deep

Actually, I guess they are "creatures from the shallow". Or even creatures from the Monterey Bay Aquarium. But you get the point.

This is from our last trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. On my way to their Online Field Guide to identify these critters I found out that their Jelly fish exhibit is going to end on Sunday. If you find yourself anywhere near Monterey this week you should stop in and see it. They are really beautiful. I am sure going to try to get there. I think they will still have jellies after Sunday, it's just the bigger collection of rare ones that is over... "Jellies: Living Art"

I did find the details on these guys too: Tube Anemone an interesting adaptation of an Anemone that can retreat into that long tube. And the crazy thing on the left is a Sea Pen, but he is not at a good angle to appreciate why he got his name. When they are standing up they look like a big fancy feather quill. I'll try to get a better picture when we go to see the jellies.


Wispy Jelly
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Wispy Jelly

I was in the mood for something a little different today when I was looking through some older images. I realized that none of my jelly photos from our last trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium made it to the Photo of the Day so it is time to fix that.

Of course, as with most photos, the lighting makes all the difference. Without it this guy would be virtually invisible. However unlike most of the photos on my site that are artificially lit I can't take credit for the lighting on this one. The Aquarium has a wonderful display that is designed to perfectly light the critters so you can appreciate their delicate beauty.