Dive no.: 9
Date: Aug 14 2007Location: Panama City FLDive site: St Andrews State Park JettiesWeather Condition: Sunny, High 92 degWater Condition: High Tide at 12:24pm
Visibility: Good, 30 feetWater Temp: 83 degEntered the water at: 12:12 pm
Max Depth: 47 ftBottom Time: 57 min
It`s unanimous! This was our absolute best dive yet!
We saw a lot of very cool marine life we`d never seen before.
I think I`m starting to get a handle on my buoyancy control. I just avoided airing up my BC so much.
Ideally when shore diving in the gulf it`s best to arrive at slack tide, which is within two hours prior to high tide. This affords you the best visibility and less chance of having to fight the outgoing tide to get back to shore.
Last time the viz was not so good which was probably due to the fact that there were no tides that day. Today had a nice deep tide and we got there just at high tide, a couple hours later than we probably should have.
We took TONS of pictures. Here are some of the highlights! Some of the names I`m not certain about since there`s not a single great reference for all the fish we saw. If you know different on any of them, by all means let me know.
Amberjack maybe? (3 ft long, 47 ft deep)
Bull Ray (3ft wide, 47 ft deep)
We saw this Bull Ray almost immediately as we landed on the bottom. He was tucked into a nook behind some rocks, just chillin out. As soon as Daniel saw him he swam right over to it with his camera, and scared it away.
Approach marine life quietly!
But after Daniel saw it and took this picture he turned to me, using sign language, he spelled out,
Gag Grouper (1.5 ft long, 25 ft deep)
Moon Jelly Fish
PINK! (8 in)
Arrow Crab (8 in from toe to toe, 15 ft deep)
My favorite marine life (5ft 9 and 5 ft even, 15 ft deep).
Reef Butterflyfish (2 in) and an Arrow Crab (to its right) (15 ft deep)
Here it comes...
Spotted Eagle Ray!!! Swimming in tandem (heehee!) (5 ft or bigger!)
OHHHH MYYYYYY GOD!!! WOWOWOW!
Another shot of the Eagle Rays
Stargazer (head is about 6 in wide) with Feather Hydroid in the foreground
Mom! Look BEHIND YOU!
Sheepshead (1.5 ft long, 20 ft deep)
Look Ma I`m Flying!
Ben examining a dying fish he`d picked up off the floor
Long-spined Sea Urchin with his party hat and all his bling bling. Behind him is the Slippery Dick (I`m not making this up!). Tho, another reference calls this guy a Green Razerfish.