I never went scuba diving at night before and we saw divers under our boats nearly every night. The wall under our boats seemed like a great place to try it: If I get disoriented, I only needed to follow the wall up. The sandy area at the top is the perfect depth for a safety stop. Then I could pop up my head and look for our boat. No problem. The first dive went so well, we did a second night dive. I put my pictures and video from both dives together in this blog. Click on a picture to expand it.
My first night diving pictures didn’t turn out very well. I thought the light was brighter than it was. On the camera screen everything looked super bright, even over exposed. But when I loaded them on the computer, they were dark and very reddish. Hmmm. Anything that was more than a few feet away didn’t turn out at all. The pictures were just black. I definitely needed to try this again knowing now to focus more on closeups. I may need to try out the macro lens at night.
We just watched this spotted moray catch and eat a fish. Unfortunately, I was having a buoyancy problem and didn’t get it on video, but here you can see the bulge in the first quarter of the body. The eel was rubbing on and squeezing between everything it passed as if trying to help push the fish through. At the end of the video are huge tarpon feeding on the tiny krill, worms, and stuff in the water. They were also eating smaller fish that we scared out, so they followed us around. I even saw a tarpon swim right between Dave’s legs! I took a picture, but it was just black.
Night Dive 2
I think my pictures on the second night dive came out better. During a night dive, you may see a whole different world. And during a night dive focusing on things you can get very close to, you see yet another world. I saw cute and fuzzy underwater caterpillars that I wanted to pick up. Good thing I didn’t because they were fireworms and are toxic. I saw sea urchins that were definitely creatures of the night. Even though they don’t appear to have eyes, they were sensitive to my light. Every time I would shine it on them to take a picture, they would recede into the coral. The tiger tail sea cucumber was sooo long. We never saw the other end of it, but it stretched out at least three feet. The last picture of the shrimp was the scrimpiest shrimp ever. It was about the length of the end of my little finger. Whenever I got close to one, it would flick its tail and ‘jump’ several feet out of my light circle.
I did try out the macro lens, but most of them still came out blurry. I think it was because of the poor light. The macro lens received good reviews so it must work under better conditions with a more experienced diver that can hold still better. For instance, I used the macro lens for the tiny shrimp and the “Some Kind of Urchin” picture.
In this video collage, which I set to music, I pieced together all the videos that came out half way decent. There were lots of eels and arrow crabs. One hunting moment by an arrow crab was so gnarly, I had to replay it in slow motion. Night diving is cool, but if we ever do it again, I want to use black lights to see the glow of the corals. There’s more easily seen, photographed, and videoed activity going on during the day. And I want to get in more underwater camera practice. I asked Dave if we could stay in Bonaire for a year. I easily could have, but he said we had places to go and see. Next up, we visit the donkey sanctuary and get mobbed!