“Nudist Colony” // Quick break from Cabo Pulmo stuff. The process of finding a cool nudibranch sea slug often goes a little something like this:
“Ooh, cool, look at those eggs! Someone’s around... OOH yep yep, we got some hydroids right here, that’s like a sea slug luau, ‘Find the substrate, find the slug’ as they say, we’re getting clo... BOOYAH BABY!! *snapsnapsnapsnap*” That’s at least the process that happened for me to find this large white and orange Flabellina trilineata on a Channel Islands trip earlier this year. But one of my favorite parts of nudibranch photography is finding all the OTHER animals chilling in the frame that I absolutely did not mean to photograph— which went something like this: “Haha, check out that rad skeleton shrimp chilling on the hydroid branch at the top there… OH AND YOU’VE GOT AN AMPHIPOD BUDDY over on the top left there, what’s going ON?! Oh dude no wait a second, below the eggs, that ghostly, leggy, spindly looking son of a…. WE GOT A PYCNOGONID PEOPLE! PYCNOGONID SEA SPIDER Y’ALL, STOP THE ‘GRAMS. Oh and there’s two of them, oh damn, what is this even… AWW, NAAAH! No way, come ON! Lower right, tuft of cerata on the lowest hydroid: EUBRANCHUS RUSTYUS PHOTOBOMB. THIS IS A TWO-FER PEOPLE!!
This photo was left on the cutting room floor in the making of my 2018 Nudibranch Calendar: “Tasteful Nudes — Full Frontal Nudity!” Link to the order form is in my bio! Starts shipping first week of December! #shamelesslugplug #psthereareactyallythreepycnogonidsinthisphotodiscountonyourcalendartothefirstonetoDMmeaphotoidentifyingallthree