Under water wonders.

Moorea. French Polynesia.

Last week off the beautiful island of Moorea, wearing mask and snorkels, we swam with Whales. After a briefing from the professional duo, we quietly entered the ocean to watch the females interacting with their young. They would come up to the surface to breath, then go down to about ten meters to rest. When we departed on the boat, one mother waggled her tail in the air to say farewell. Beautiful mammals.
We then went inside the reef to see the rays and sharks. As I entered the water, I was enveloped by a ray the size of a dustbin lid. It felt like a soft, rubbery, velvet embrace.

We had an amazing day with these people. Check out their website

We have scuba dived for years and been in awe of the wonders of nature underwater. One of our pleasures is hunting for Nudibranchs and, OK, looking for slugs isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but these sea slugs are exotic and beautiful. We’ve been dissapointed to have only spotted a few minute, plain white nudibranchs whilst diving in French Polynesia.

Thinking nothing could compare to our thrilling experience watching the enormous whales, I was stunned to notice a tiny rare treasure on the pontoon pilon where our yacht Shiraz is berthed in the Papeete marina in Tahiti.

This needed further investigation.

The tiny animal was a few feet under the surface, it could have been a sea sponge but I was sure I could see gills on it’s upper body suggesting that it was a Nudibranch. This would be such a rare discovery. It required an underwater shot.

It was indeed a Nudibranch.
Next morning the animal was grazing on the pilon water line. We couldn’t believe our eyes.
With clear water, I snapped away with my phone camera.

I’m still trying to identify the species. John thinks there are others on the pilon. Truly amazing.

Lines

WordPress weekly photo-challenge


The Instructions.

As you look through your lens this week, pay attention to lines.


The word Lines holds so many meanings. It even evokes memories from my schooling so long ago.

Write twenty lines said the French school teacher. “The capital of France is Paris not the School Rugby pitch”. And stop looking out of the window.

Now, if the French teacher had said “You will need to learn French because one day you will live on a yacht in French Polynesia” my attention would have snapped back to the classroom, in an instant. My French never did improve.

So here I am attached to a mooring buoy looking through my camera lens at lines.

Lines are everywhere on yachts. Something has to hold the mast up. It’s known as the rigging.

Using a line, you can drop the hook or pick up a mooring ball in exotic locations and be at one with nature.

Colour changes depict the depth contour lines in the lagoon.

And then there’s the line of breaking surf over the reef.

Natural lines. Where sea meets sand, coconut trees, sky and clouds.

The clouds form lines.

Note the rugged outline of the island terrain forming lines in the sky.

When you look around, you find lines everywhere.

Awakening


The Instructions.

Weekly photo-challenge. This week, show us an image of an awakening.


It’s official, the cyclone season is over…. well according to the Muscovy Duck. He must have had some form of awakening.

The Muscovy Duck; as featured in several previous blogs, spent his cyclone season by choice out of the water on the marina pontoons.

He suffered in the heavy rain and looked bedraggled at times, so against my better judgement I fed him.

He responded to my help with a waggle of his tail and a gift of a feather.

Gift

Unfortunately, he had a roucous appetite and what went in, came out quickly. It wasn’t difficult to follow his messy trail along the pontoon.

Gradually as the weather improved, so did his plumage. He flexed his wings and took a few short flights and swimming trips.

My husband and I sailed off to another island over Easter. On our return, much to my delight, we discovered the Muscovy Duck back in the water.

Fending for himself he swims around eating the marine life under the pontoons. His plumage is now magnificent.

When he spots me, he swims over and I have a little chat. He’s mute, which is just as well as he wouldn’t get a word in edgeways.

He’s such a poser. It’s hard to resist taking photos.

So is my Muscovy Duck right? Has he had a ‘spring awakening’? Is the cyclone season really over? I do hope so.

Day 6: “Solitude” — The Rule of Thirds

The Instructions

When composing your solitude shot, think about the placement of your subject. Use the Rule of Thirds to place the subject in your frame, ideally at one of the intersections of these lines, or somewhere along them.


Today I would like to introduce you to the Muscovy Duck, who is a transient visitor to the Papeete Marina. His first appearance some six months ago was somewhat of a mystery, a solitary bird who looked lost, confused and out of place. Now he regularly makes an appearance, he’s very laid back and likes to waddle around the pontoons but he’s always alone. I’ve spotted him on many occasions in the Paofai Park but I think he feels safer in the quiet marina, where folks are kind. Sometimes he’s forced to take to the water because a dog or child has startled him. I don’t think he’s keen on swimming and waggles his tail in annoyance.

I’m using the Muscovy Duck who lives in solitude as my photo theme for the Rule of Thirds.

I think this mid distance shot of the duck on the pontoon allowed me to apply the Rule of Thirds to the best advantage.

Solitary Muscovy Duck on the pontoon in Papeete Marina.

I didn’t think the distance shot worked too well bearing in mind that he’s a duck, not an ostrich, so is quite small in stature. Although it made the solitude point more poignant.

Solitary life of a Muscovy Duck.

Being photogenic, he liked to waddle towards me, so most of the shots were close ups, making it difficult to apply the rules.

Stretching his wings.
Waddling along the pontoon

Any feedback on my application of the Rule of Thirds is welcome.

I was fascinated to read about the Muscovy Duck in the Wikipedia link. Look at the last paragraph under the heading Description. Crikey, may be this explains why this Muscovy Duck is a solitary chap.

Day 3 “Water” Image orientation.

The Instructions

When composing today’s photo of water, experiment with both horizontal (landscape) and vertical (portrait) orientations.


Today I had fun playing around with my Galaxy S8 phone camera. I took landscape /portrait photos using different water themes.

Some photos were quite pretty but it was difficult to decide whether I preferred the landscape or portrait shots of the image. I think this was because the photos were too busy.

In the end I deliberately selected an unattractive scene.

Landscape Image

I actually quite liked the landscape, horizontal image. It showed the rocks in the foreground, the river estuary and nautical feature in the mid section, with the sea leading out to the Island of Moorea in the background.

Horizontal image of estuary. Moorea in the background.

Portrait Image

There was a lot of sky and foreground rocks in the vertical image. The background was insignificant.

Vertical image of estuary.

So Which One

Both photos could be used, each portrayed a different message.

Not sure what any one else thinks?