Scuba Bonaire: Oil Slick Leap, June 25

We’d started to hear things about ostracods, a tiny creature that mates a few days after the full moon, putting on a bio-luminescent show shortly after sundown. The consensus was that Oil Slick Leap was our best option to see them, so we decided to check the dive out in the daytime to prepare. The ladder looks intimidating, but actually it’s a nice night exit because it’s even and predictable. And there’s a nice “leap” entry just a few steps away – which we ended up taking after contemplating the climb backwards down the steps. Also, see the yellow buoy in the background? Most dive sites have these, moorings that mark the site and allow a dive boat (or three dinghies) to tie up.

And it was a pretty nice dive, with lots of soft corals in the shallow areas making it an ideal ostracod viewing area. We saw a number of different critters, like this harlequin bass and slender filefish. Andrew spent forever looking through the wrasse section of the fish book trying to identify the two to four inch harlequin, only to find it by accident in the “heavy bodies, large lips” section. Go figure.

We also found a juvenile smooth trunkfish! Affectionately known as dice, these little cuties hover and move with fins so small that they’re almost invisible. This one is almost big enough to have discernible features.

This screaming goldentail moray may be the most meme-able photo we’ve taken to date. “Mom! Mom!”

While we’re senselessly personifying, here’s coy three-spot damselfish deciding whether or not to fight you (they will always decide to fight you), casual french angelfish minding its own business, and a dejected scorpion fish.

And finally, the star of the show, a lettuce sea slug (yes, that’s really what it’s called. Because it looks like lettuce.) And some funky growths and coral formations we don’t know anything about.

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