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|Newsletter January 2012|
Trip Report Sorong-Sorong (25 Dec 2011 - 06 Jan 2012)
Hi To All!
Our Christmas & New Year trip got off to a festive start on Christmas Day with a yummy Christmas Dinner of turkey (served by a reindeer?), followed by Nico's legendary carrot cake, complete with Santa Claus on top! Of our 15 guests on board, only 4 had not been on the Seven Seas before and for some it was their third or fourth trip and just like coming home to family & friends.
The beginning of the trip found us in the Dampier Strait, where we mingled with schooling fish at Kri and wobbegongs at Mioskon. Often found under ledges lying on the sand or rubble bottom, where it is perfectly camouflaged, the tassled wobbegong shark is the most commonly sighted shark in the Raja Ampat Islands, although we are starting to see more reef sharks, as well as the Raja Ampat walking shark, of which we saw no less than 5 on the Yenbesir Jetty night dive! Other highlights in the Dampier Strait included a pyramid of schooling sweetlips at Otdima & watching a giant black manta ray being cleaned for 45 minutes at Manta Sandy.
Critter highlights included a spot tail frogfish (Lophiiocharon sp.) under the Cendana pearl farm jetty in Aljui bay: this rarely seen frogfish carries its eggs on its side (male) and is often found under wharf pilings (see guest photo); a blue ringed octopus at Cendana Fuel Dock & another at Algae Patch2, ornate, halimeda & robust ghostpipefish pairs at Batanta, as well as mimic & hairy octopus.
Misool never disappoints: one of Wayil's sites was so productive that our guests opted to dive it all day & night! Both macro & wide angle subjects were off the charts! For the macro dives, we focused on pygmy seahorses: three different species with colour variations. Swarms of baitfish, squadrons of mobula rays and schools of barracuda, trevally, batfish & surgeonfish, along with a large black tip reef shark completed the wide angle highlights.
All in all, our first trip of 2012 was a great one and we are looking forward to welcoming back old friends this year, as well as making new ones. See you all on board!
Karl & Linda
» Read here what our guests had to say about this trip
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