Scuba Bonaire: Hidden Beach, July 7th

Hidden Beach is one of the official-unofficial sites along Bonaire’s southwest coast: not officially a dive site, but so universally known and frequently visited that it finds a place in the guidebooks. That whole stretch of coast is roughly similar: the coral is patchier, and there’s less hard coral, but the soft coral is huge. We stopped by with Topher and Kim from Dorothy Rose for a social dive.

Like everywhere else on Bonaire, we found plenty of lionfish. Scowl.

We’ve been seeing these little guys around, and finally took a picture (left). It turns out that it’s an artichoke coral, which is an awesome name. Right, an arrow crab hiding in a vase sponge.

As we got shallower, the reef thinned a bit and the soft corals got smaller.

… and we started to see more critters, like this coral shrimp, and these butterfly fish.

Check out the lips on these trunkfish! And the mix of bubble coral and spiral worms.

We’d planned to do this as a drift dive, but the current was so light that we decided to turn around. Here’s the committee making the decision, while Andrew hunts for more stuff like this slender filefish and this chain moray.

We decided to turn around… and we were glad we did, because we were rewarded with squids! And a turtle!

All in all, an excellent dive.

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