Monday, March 31, 2014

Species List: Clown Reef, Gneering Shoals, Sunshine Coast, 30-03-2014

24 species found at Clown Reef, Gneering Shoals, Sunshine Coast.
Terry and David on this excursion consisting of 1 x 70 minute and 1 x 79 minute dives in water depths of 15m to 20m. 15m viz, 25C water temp and no surge but an extremely strong southerly current that affected the entire depth of the water column and only easing slightly right down on the substrate.

The heavy rainfalls at the end of the week prompted us to head out to the Gneering Shoals to avoid the huge amount of runoff affecting the inshore areas. We decided upon Clown Reef because of its range of depths and also because it is about 4.5 nautical miles offshore. Struggling against the current certainly had an effect upon our air consumption on the first dive and also upon the critter count. We were much more settled on the second dive assisted no doubt by some slight easing of the current. We are suggesting that the Dendrodoris found under an old small coral plate is a new species for us (# 369) - Dendrodoris elongata - because we see differences between it and Dendrodoris sp. 1 already listed on the website. It is certainly not D. albopurpura or D. albobrunnea both also already found. That same pizza-sized coral plate delivered up two more toppings by way of a Phyllidiopsis cardinalis and two Dermatobranchus fortunata making it a valuable piece of real estate for the day's hunting. Dermatobranchus semilunus is also a species rarely sighted in our survey area.

Number of species sighted: 1st dive/2nd dive
* Species with highest specimen count

Aegires flores -/1
Berthellina citrina -/1
Bornella anguilla 1/-
Chromodoris elisabethina 2/1
Chromodoris splendida -/1
Dendrodoris elongata  -/1 (New species)
* Dermatobranchus cf. primus 2/3
Dermatobranchus fortunata -/2
Dermatobranchus rodmani -/1
Dermatobranchus semilunus 1/-
Doriprismatica atromarginata 2/1
Flabellina bicolor 1/1
Flabellina sp. 1 1/-
Glossodoris hikuerensis 1/-
Glossodoris vespa 1/-
Phyllidia coelestis -/1
Phyllidia varicosa -/1
Phyllidiella lizae 1/1
Phyllidiella pustulosa 3/1
Phyllidiopsis cardinalis -/1
Phyllodesmium macphersonae -/2
Trinchesia ornata -/1
Trinchesia sp. 6 -/1
Trinchesia sp. 20 1/-

Surface conditions - looking back 
towards Mooloolaba

Berthellina citrina

Phyllidia coelestis - juvenile

Glossodoris hikuerensis

Doriprismatica atromarginata

A pair of Chromodoris elisabethina

Phyllidiella pustulosa

Dermatobranchus semilunus

Glossodoris vespa - juvenile

Aegires flores

A pair of Dermatobranchus fortunata


Substrate - lots of soft and hard corals

Conditions during our surface interval 
looking out towards the blinker
- more boats than fish we think

Trinchesia sp. 20

Dermatobranchus cf. primus

Bornella anguilla

Dermatobranchus rodmani

Trinchesia sp. 6

Phyllidiopsis cardinalis

Dermatobranchus fortunata - a side view

Phyllidia varicosa

Chromodoris splendida - juvenile

Phyllodesmium macphersonae - mating pair

Dendrodoris elongata - body translucent,
 obvious tubercles on the mantle surface, 
centre row of brown spots and 
whitish stellate markings

Dendrodoris elongata

Dendrodoris elongata - gills withdrawn

Dendrodoris elongata

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Species List: La Balsa Park, Mooloolah River, Sunshine Coast, 24-03-2014

13 species found at La Balsa Park, Mooloolah River, Sunshine Coast.
Terry and David on this 167 minute morning dive in water depths to 5m. Variable viz to 3m & 26C water temp.
We entered the water close to the end of the run out to low tide. The viz was only about half a metre but we managed to stay in touch with each other using our dive lights until the tide turned and the viz improved. We probably only covered about 50m towards the mouth of the river from the last set of stairs in the park proper. The dive revealed one species new to our list (Goniodoridella sp. 3), a find new for The Team (Myja longicornis), plus a few new ones recorded for this site. Pteraeolidia ianthina dominated the finds and were especially numerous in the deeper sections.

Species note: With regard to Myja longicornis, this is a new find for The Team. A much clearer image showing the salient features of the species can now head that page on the website.

* Species with highest specimen count

Bulbaeolidia alba 8
Elysia asbecki 1
Facelina sp. 3 1
Goniobranchus daphne 7
Goniodoridella savignyi 3
Goniodoridella sp. 1 5
Goniodoridella sp. 3 1 (our 568th species)
Hypselodoris obscura 5
Myja longicornis 1 (a new find for the team)
Phidiana bourailli 1
* Pteraeolidia ianthina 31
Trinchesia yamasui 1
Unidentia angelvaldesi 14

Unidentia angelvaldesi

Bulbaeolidia alba

Myja longicornis on its hydroid food

Goniodoridella sp. 1

Facelina sp. 3 

Goniobranchus daphne

Trinchesia yamasui

Pteraeolidia ianthina - mating

Hypselodoris obscura - mating

Goniodoridella savignyi

Goniodoridella sp. 3 (our 568th species)

Goniodoridella sp. 3 - under the microscope

Phidiana bourailli

Phidiana bourailli - under the microscope

Phidiana bourailli - under the microscope

Facelina sp. 3 - under the microscope

Elysia asbecki - under the microscope

Myja longicornis

Myja longicornis - under the microscope

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Species List: La Balsa, Mooloolah River, Sunshine Coast, 22-03-2014

16 species found on a single night shore dive at La Balsa Park, Mooloolah River, Sunshine Coast.
Julie, Terry & David on this 130 minute dive in water depths to 5.5m. Variable viz to 2m & 26C water temp.
The type of substrate we had observed in previous dives at this site convinced us that a night dive would be rewarding and we were not disappointed. Entering the water at about half flood tide, just after 8:00 pm, we worked upstream and were not overly bothered by the tidal current. From this excursion we have added 3 species new to our list (see below) two of these as a direct result of the nocturnal timing of our search. Many thanks to Julie for her perseverance with the navigation, keeping us all together and leading the dive with the safety float not to mention finding many of the species.

* Species with highest specimen count

Austrocylichna sp. 1 (shell) 1
Chelidonura fulvipunctata 1
Eubranchus sp. 10 1 (our 565th species)
Euselenops luniceps 2 (our 566th species)
Flabellina rubrolineata 1
Goniobranchus daphne 4
Hoplodoris nodulosa 2
Hydatina physis 1
Philinopsis gardineri 1 (our 567th species)
Philinopsis pilsbryi 1
Philinopsis speciosa 2
Philinopsis taronga 1
Pteraeolidia ianthina 5
Trinchesia sibogae 1
Trinchesia diversicolor 1
*Unidentia angelvaldesi 21

Austrocylichna sp. 1

Philinopsis speciosa

Euselenops luniceps (our 566th species)

Hoplodoris nodulosa

Chelidonura fulvipunctata

Goniobranchus daphne

Philinopsis gardineri (our 567th species)

Philinopsis taronga

Philinopsis taronga

Hydatina physis

Unidentia angelvaldesi

Trinchesia diversicolor

Philinopsis speciosa

Philinopsis speciosa

Euselenops luniceps (our 566th species)

Trinchesia sibogae

Hoplodoris nodulosa

Eubranchus sp. 10 (our 565th species)

Eubranchus sp. 10

Eubranchus sp. 10 

Eubranchus sp. 10 - cerata detail

Eubranchus sp. 10