It was great to get back in the water after a long winter break. Hearing that there were Port Jackson Sharks (PJs) at Shelly Beach got me in the water today. I lost count after about 25, there were PJs everywhere. They varied in colour and most were under a metre long.
Port Jackson Shark
Port Jackson Shark, Heterodontus portusjacksoni are very common tis time of year, between May – October. The teeth of the Port Jackson Shark are not serrated and are used to hold and break, then crush and grind the shells of molluscs and sea urchins.
The Giant Cuttlefish Sepia apama are one of my favourite animals to find on a dive. On our way back to shore I spotted one under under a rocky ledge and was excited to see a second Cuttle hiding too. They are inquisitive and playful and came out in the open to check us out.
The Eastern Blue Groper Achoerodus viridis is a familiar sight for Sydney Divers. The friendly Blue Groper often follows you around while you are on a dive. I have been surprised more than once to turn around and be face to face with one of these guys. You can find out more about the Blue Groper on the Australian Museum website
We saw several Smooth Stingrays Bathytoshia brevicaudatais hiding in the sand when we were on the way back to shore. One was on top of the sand and the other had covered itself in sand. You could just see the outline of the stingray and the eyes sticking out above the sand. The Smooth stingray are the largest stingray in the world, but sometimes still hard to spot. Check out the video below (not my video).
What can you do to help preserve this amazing environment?
- Remove any rubbish that you find in the water or on the beach
- Remove any bits of fishing line and nets that you see
- Be aware that what you do on land impacts our marine systems downstream