Giant Sunfish (Mola Mola) & Bali DM Madi

09-Mar-2011 Back to Image Gallery

Giant Sunfish (Mola Mola) & Bali DM Madi

The only place in the Indo/Pacific divers can expect to encounter Giant Sunfish is Nusa Penida, Bali. So I travel to Bali each year leading our dive trips as I am addicted to big marine animals. Our Bali Dive guides are experts in locating these magnificent 3 meter fish and assist in capturing exceptional images for our photographers. The Sunfish prefer the cooler, deep water but during the winter season they cruise in from the ocean depths to visit the Bali reef drop offs where they visit the cleaning stations. Thousands of banner fish wait to clean the Sun Fish of parasites. We time our trips to meet them too and if we are lucky we will have an encounter with world’s largest fish.

Photo Data: Location: Nusa Penida, Bali. Genre: Wide Angle Sunlight & Single Strobe. Photo Data: Nikon D200, Nikkor 12 – 24 zoom lens, Seacam Housing & Single Seacam Strobe, ISO 200, Manual Exposure Mode. Exposure f8 @ 1/125 th second. Image by Kevin Deacon.

Photo Hints: Select the exposure to render the water column a nice blue. Shoot some test shots of some rocks or your dive buddy nearby to test that your strobe power setting is suitable for a similar strobe to subject distance as your intended subject. For Sunfish this would be about two meters from your camera. When your subject turns up, do not swim at it and minimize your movements while close as you do not want to frighten it away. I prefer to use a single strobe with a wide angle diffuser as this is more manageable and manoeuvrable when I am simultaneously dealing with big animals, currents and deep water.

Interesting Facts: Sunfish are the largest species of bony fishes, sharks and rays have no bones their skeleton is cartilage. Sunfish are related to pufferfish and toadfish, their diet includes jellyfish & salps. In Europe they are called Moonfish.

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