Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Back in the air

On the flight back I had a crummy seat by the wing, but I could still see some neat stuff!

Barrier reef and lagoon, check out the different colors of blue (darker = deeper)


Platform interior and Donna Cut

Donna Cut close up (dark spots are clouds)



Those are the tidal flats!

 You can almost see the path we walked...


Good bye you beautiful carbonate platform!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Turks and Caicos Dive Days

My last 3 days on the Caicos platform were specifically for SCUBA diving! Turks and Caicos has a beautiful wall to dive off of and I got to dive off the West point of Provo as well as the wall on West Caicos! Both spots were amazing with lots of sharks, corals, sponges, and fish. If you ever get the change to dive a wall like this, take it! It is absolutely fabulous, on the one side is a gorgeous reef, and on the other, deep blue water, kilometers deep!


Flounder!






"hook 'em"
Hiding behind the sponges!
Very cool spiney flower coral (Mussa angulosa)

Me and the awesome divemaster (the fish photos, pics of me and the movies are all his)

There were loads of sharks!
video


And some really cool fish (a flying Gurnard)
video


video


video

Now.... over the platform edge into the deep blue!



Down through a sediment bypass channel!



The West Caicos edge has a very steel reef wall!!!


And a little ledge choc-a-bloc with amazing platy corals!


 How awesome are those?!? SO AWESOME!




I got a little excited about taking photos of the platy corals!

 Evil Lionfish....


After the dives I had the afternoons to myself, what better way to relax than to find myself an ooid beach!

Long Bay Beach


Makin' ooids!

Toes for scale!

Oh Caicos platform.... you are fabulous!





Sunday, March 15, 2015

Turks and Caicos Day 6- Last snorkel

For the last day on the island we left the students at the hotel and went snorkeling/diving. Here are the shots from our last day of snorkelling, dive photos/videos to come later!

Finally reefs that are alive!!!



Old Acropora palmata (elkhorn coral) with Dr. Carlie Kerans for scale.






Close up of the elkhorn coral

 With scale...

Little coral patches between the bigger reefs


Bubbles!
Check out the reef rubble!
Thalassa grasses stabilizing the sediment

On to the next site!

More A. palmata



Corky sea finger

 Storm rubble, a.k.a. overturned A. palmata

 Charlie with some awesome sand waves!


Intrepid field trip leaders Charlie and Steve!

Porites porites

West Caicos

Acropora cervicornis (staghorn coral)

This is the biggest thicket of it I have ever seen!

It's like a forest!


Madracis auretenra (yellow pencil coral)

A huge colony!


Agaricia sp.


This colony of Madracis auretenra was the size of a minivan, if not, a school bus!

Check out how it erodes when it dies!



Anemone

This ray is trying to hide from us!

Black band disease on a coral