Wunderpus Octopus

24-Jul-2012 Back to Image Gallery

Wunderpus Octopus

You might think that after 49 years exploring the oceans and over 10,000 dives I would have seen it all! But the reality is quite different. The marine environments of the world are so vast that new species are continually being discovered and the magic of that first encounter and remarkable image of something new is just a scuba breath away for many of us. Such was the case when I came upon this amazing creature in Lembeh Strait in 2008.These octopuses are quite small but very bold so it all but ignored me as it swept across the seafloor occasionally probing its tentacles between pebbles looking for prey. I find myself completely absorbed during interactions with such rare and amazing creatures, it is no surprise that I have run close to bottom time limits and low air supply far too often. These days I have the extra safety margin provided by enriched air and sophisticated dive computers, fortunately!

Photo Data: Location: Lembeh Strait, Sulawesi, Indonesia. Genre: Macro. Photo Data: Nikon D200, Nikkor 60mm lens, Seacam Housing, Dual Seacam Strobes, and Manual Exposure Mode. ISO 100 Exposure f22 @ 1/125th sec. Imageby Kevin Deacon.

Photo Hints: Dual strobes ensure even lighting and elimination of harsh shadows cast by a single strobe when shooting images of animals with so much shape and form. The ability to hover and manoeuvre just off the seafloor is useful and should be practiced by underwater photographers as you will need to track along with moving subjects like these.

Interesting Facts: Wunderpus Octopus, scientific name, Wunderpus photogenicus, is a relatively new species to science and its discovery is largely due to the increased exploration opportunities now available to divers due to the popularity of dive travel and increased diving infrastructure Worldwide. It is quite possible that the Wunderpus has a venomous bite like the blue ringed octopus so they should never be handled.

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