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The Undersea World of La Parguera

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Published on Apr 23, 2012

In March I was afforded an opportunity to join in on a dive trip to La Parguera, Puerto Rico, led by Esat Atikkan. In the three days I spent diving with the group, we visited Black Wall, The Forest, Coral Gardens (where we heard a whale call from out in the deep blue), The Chimney, Hole In The Wall, and The Rope. From the six dives I took several hundred still images and over 22 minutes of video. This video is a small subset sampling from those images and video clips.

Half the dives we did were on 'the wall', which starts around 60' and drops in sloping increments to 120', 150', and some point soon after that, plummets to 5000'. I never went much below 90' (saw no need, and going that deep meant less light for the camera - and using up more air in the tank!). The other half of the dives were in the reef, which had depths from 50-70'.

We saw a plethora of creatures in all the dives, but nothing large (no grouper, no nurse shark, no rays, etc). Saw a few moray, a pufferfish (0:37), a couple of grey angels, a couple of sand divers (one appears in this video, if you can find him; hint: look thirty seconds into the vid) a few squirrelfish (1:18), a handful of lionfish, various parrotfish, grunts, butterflyfish, sergeant majors, and tons of black durgons (a prime example of one at 1:02 but many appear elsewhere in this video), among other fish. Also saw a large spadefish ball (0:26), and later a fairly large crab (1:19) during the dive at The Chimney. And for everything I did see, there was a ton of stuff I never noticed (case in point, the video clip starting at 0:48, notice the fish hiding behind the sea fan as I close in along the reef wall, and scampers away as I come through the fan and the clip ends - never saw that fish when I was filming)

For the stills and video I was using a Canon Powershot IS1100 digicam with a special underwater housing, but no external strobe light source. The stills that have color in them used the camera's built-in flash. I was running it at ISO 400 to try and keep some of the noise down in the images.

Music: "Last Chance" by Sarah Schachner (for this video I wish it was a little longer :-) ).

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