My Recent Dives - May & June 2016
Posted by Michael on 01 May 2016 00:00
1 May - Bare Island Deep Wall
Went in off W point as again very calm. Headed SW to wall and then did the normal dive back to exit. Found a couple of firefish, then back where we used to see the sea horses, I found a very old looking one. Then looked for the tiny black anglerfish that was seen yesterday by some near the concrete block E of RIF Reef, but no luck. A spiny gurnard here. Back to 15 m Reef and then towards exit. Saw 2 tiny orange anglerfish along here, same as the one seen recently. Then saw the other 2 orangle anglerfish that we have seen before, so 4 today (still could not find the black one). Saw some cuttlefish, eels, octopus and more. Antoher excellent dive! Visibility very good.

5 May - Barrens Hut/The Split
Club boat dive in Argonaut. A bit sloppy, not expected as has been millpond last 6 days. A bit surgy as well, but okay. Viz was variable, better in some spots. Lots of silver sweep at various spots, two large wobbegong sharks, one in cave. Only one pineapplefish. All the bastard trumpeters were on outside of cave. A very good dive. Visibility good.

6 May - Bypass Reef
Went out on Dick's new RIB. Set up well. Swell probably a bit more than yesterday but less chop. Very little current. Saw one sea dragon and a large school of yellowtail and seapike. Nice dive. Visibility good.

7 May - Henry Head
Club boat dive & BBQ day. Almost high tide so little current and quite good voiz, 15 m min. Saw a wobbegong shark, 2 sea dragons, 2 big belly sea horses, a large school of yellowtail and mado, some cuttlefish, large and small, a couple of schools of old wives and more. This really is the best sponge garden in Sydney, if not anywhere in NSW. A great dive and a great day. Visibility very good.

8 May - Bare Island 15 Metre Reef
Went off W point and headed W towards RIF Reef. Went to the concrete block to look for the tiny black anglerfish but Kelly had sinus problems so we had to ascend back to 15 m Reef. Donna found a large black striped anglerfish here. Some nice nudibranchs as well as plenty of dwarf firefish (saw 10-12). Then to IR1 where Kelly found a brown striped anglerfish. Once back on main reef, saw tiny 10 mm orange anglerfish, probably not one of the ones we saw last week. Back to exit, saw the other two orange anglerfish, the larger one is now at least 30 mm long. Saw three RIF, some opera house nudis and flabbalennas, octopus, cuttlefish. A brilliant dive. Visibility very good.

12 May - Bare Island Isolated Reef 1
Club night dive, 6 attending. Very strong W winds so had to go in from before Pool. One black anglerfish near SHR, saw the brown striped anglerfish on IR1. Quite a few dwarf firefish, a red PPH and a blue-ringed octopus near it. On the way back saw three tiny orange anglerfish, three RIF and more. A great dive. Visibility very good.

14 May - Yellow Rock
First dive with Mak Cat, ran well. Calm seas and W winds. Dived S and then N from anchor. Saw a large bullray with no tail twice, also a small turtle. Lots of leatherjackets, especially black reef. Some silver sweep and yellowtail. Nice easy dive. Visibility good.

15 May - Middle Ground
Millpond seas and little wind. Anchored on N side. Went right around, saw a wobbegong shark, a very large six-spined leatherjacket, large schools of silver sweep and seapike as well as lots of yellowtail. A great dive. Lots of dolphins around before and after dive, but none seen underwater. Visibility very good.

18 May - Pizza Reef
Club boat dive. A bit sloppier than last Sunday, but visibility over 25 m. Anchored right near cave where there were a thousand seapike as well as about 30 bastard trumpeters. Lots of other fish around, could easily see all the reefs way off Pizza, as well as the boat. A fantastic dive. Visibility very good.

21 May - Middle Ground
Despite very light winds, there was a very large SE swell running. The water was blue, we could see Mak Cat from 24 m. However, below this it was terrible. Viz was 2 to 3 m, lots of floating sand as the surge pushed us back and forward. We only went a short distance from the anchor, but saw the divers from Wayne's boat. About the only thing we saw were 2 wobbegongs, one was huge. Visibility very poor.

15 June - Pizza Reef
Club boat dive. First dive after the huge East Coast Low of 10 days ago. Water blue and 30 m viz above 20 m but only 4-5 m on bottom. Still a great dive, lots of fish, especially seapike, bastard trumpeters, yellowtail, silver sweep and one-spot pullers. Also one blue devilfish and a couple of six-spined leatherjackets. Boat went well with batteries now in bow and some extra weight there. Much better. Also saw lots of dolphins and about 4 humpback whales which went by about 50 m off us. A really good dive. Visibility poor.

22 June - Pizza Reef
Club boat dive. More rain last weekend, but water still good above 20 m. Much better than last week, say 7-10 m on bottom. Another great dive, lots of fish, especially seapike, bastard trumpeters, yellowtail and trevallies. A school of 10 medium kingfish as well. Could not refind the blue devilfish but saw a couple of cuttlefish and a few black reef leatherjackets. Could faintly hear humpback whales but did not see any. Took five out and boat went well. Too bad the weekend is looking bad weatherwise! Visibility good.

25 June - Shiprock
First time diving here for over 2 months and there is a fari bit of change after the rainfall of a few weeks ago. At least 25 cm of sand missing around the bommies and the moray eel home on the last bommie filled in. Saw a large flathead, two pineapplefish, a large striped nudibranch, a juvenile short-finned bannerfish but no other nudibranchs. Also a Whites seahorse in 2m near entry, supposed to be four here. Only a reasonable dive. Visibility poor.

29 June - Lilli Pilli
Low tide but viz okay. Very cold on top, 14.3C but 16.5C at 15 m. Incoming water appeared to be warmer. Went along swimming net, say 10 White's seahorses here, most on the bottom of the net, all quite small. Back along the net after the wharf and deeper. Found a pipefish and a larger White's seahorse here. Then to moorings, a small firefish here. Back via the rock shelves, a butterflyfish and another White's. Back to net and then out, no more seahorses seen (12 all up). A very nice dive, much better than expected, but very cold. Visibility fair.

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