Fluorescent Nudibranch

08-Apr-2013 Back to Image Gallery

Fluorescent Nudibranch

Major Armina Nudibranch fluorescing at night. For the past 9 months Kevin & Cherie Deacon have been secretly night diving in our home waters and overseas tropical destinations pursuing a new direction in marine science and a new genre in underwater photography. `The discovery and photography of species unknown to fluoresce. Particularly in Australian temperate waters '. This is just one of many images destined to be published in dive & natural history media Worldwide. This image is another World first from Kevin's endless quest for new images and a World first in natural history knowledge. He has many more new fluorescing species from his night time explorations he is yet to reveal. Fluorescence, the light emitting reaction known to occur in corals has more recently been observed in other marine life. This reaction is visible once the subject is illuminated in ultraviolet wavelengths of light. The fluorescence can only be observed and photographed using UV light and fluorescent corals or creatures are the only things visible in the dark using this light source. Hence the term `Black Light Diving" Fluoro diving demands a certain mind set and discipline in self control as one is literally cruising the night sea floor in total darkness hoping fluorescent life forms reveal themselves! In other words, `a hell of a lot of groping around in the dark'. This Major Armina Nudibranch, at 90mm in length, is giant among Nudibranch and Kevin captured this incredible image during an intensive series of black light night dives at Fly Point and Pipeline, Nelson Bay last November.

Photo Data: Location: Pipeline, Nelsoon Bay, Port Stephens, NSW, Australia. Photo Data: Nikon D7000, Nikkor 60mm lens, Dual Strobes with Fluoro Filters, and Manual Exposure Mode. ISO 400 Exposure f8 @ 1/60th sec. Genre: Fluoro Photography Macro. Image by Kevin Deacon.

Photo Hints: The UV wave light emitted by the strobes is quite weak so full power is required as is a wider aperture than normal. Depth of field will be very reduced so very accurate focusing on the key part of the subject is essential. EQUIPMENT COMMENTS: To discover fluorescing subjects a purpose built filter is fitted to your dive light. The more powerful the dive light, the more fluorescent subjects you are likely to observe. Kevin uses Sola Lights fitted with a custom designed swing filter built by our Dive 2000 engineer. Divers must also wear a special Barrier Filter over their face mask. Dive 2000 now has the Australian distributorship of the required filters for divers, dive lights, strobes and focus lights and our custom filters are exclusively available from our dive centre.

Interesting Facts: The Nudibranch, Major Armina is a temperate water species unique to NSW. It emerges from under the sand to feed primarily on sea pens and soft corals. Armina is an ancient Persian word.

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