NEAq & MBAq Joint Expedition Fiji 2010
These trips are always great fun & a learning experience, welcoming back old friends who know the reefs, crew & critters better than I. Dr. Steve W. from the Monterey Bay Aquarium & Dr. Steve Bailey, curator of fishes at the New England Aquarium, have made many joint expeditions to Fiji in the years that NAI’A has been operating. Stacy Jupiter of the Wildlife Conservation Society was also aboard & is currently working towards setting up a large MPA here in Fiji. The Vatu-i-ra Seascape project is primarily concerned with protecting the rich & diverse reefs in the Bligh Waters – NAI'A’s premier diving destination. This is something that has been a dream for Rob & Cat – they have been very vocal over the years on the need to protect this hot spot of bio diversity in central Fiji.
Great shot considering Mark had a macro lens on!!!!!
Flying the flag - taken by Sam
Moray at the dentist - taken by Bruce
All aboard - taken by Keith
John Lennon fever hits Fijian village - taken by Dr W.
Turtle at Mount Mutiny - taken by Bruce
Great perspective shot - taken by Bruce
Ornate Ghost Pipe Fish hiding in the Whip Coral - taken by Bruce
Octopus in Namena - taken by Bruce
Clarks line up for Bruce
Clean up on Vatu-i-ra - taken by Keith
Keith nails the colorful Fijian reef shot!
Grouper looking for scraps from the Octopus's meal - taken by Wila
Stacy from WCS & Tui Kubulau during the village visit - taken by Keith
Bruce dancing in Nigali Passage - taken by Keith
Dragonet at dusk, looking for a mate - taken by Mark
Booby on Vatu-i-ra - taken by Stacy
Close up of a Clam or abstract art? - taken by Bruce
Hawk Fish feeding off an Anthias - taken by Mark
Richard, Dr W. & Mo all dressed up - taken by Keith
Yellow Nose Gobi - taken by Mark
Strike a pose - taken by Bruce
Crocodile fish on a night dive in Namena -taken by Stacy
Great view from the hill on Vatu-i-ra -taken by Stacy
Octopus feeding - captured by Mark
Grey Reef in Namena - taken by Stacy
Blue Ribbon Eel at Wakaya - taken by Mark
Leopard Blenny hiding out - taken by Mark
Stacy hunts out the Leaf Fish.
The Arch at NSAT taken by Stacy
Thor Shrimp in a bubble coral -taken by Stacy
Wire Coral - taken by Wila
Huge Bumphead Parrot Fish in Namena - taken By Stacy
This crab should find a more desirable abode - taken by Dr W.
Crinoid close up - taken by Dr W.
Lion Fish hunting - taken by Wila
Schooling Grey Reefs in Nigali Passage - taken by Wila
Manta cruising in Wakaya - taken by Wila
The group is made up of friends, scientists & aquarium volunteers who all share a passion for the underwater environment. Their repeated trips to Fiji also enable them to study the health of the reefs. Transects, video & photos of specific areas are all tools used to monitor the reefs condition. Fiji’s reefs are looking very healthy & abundant, but check out their detailed blog at: http://fb.me/zh1ebvx2
Underwater trip highlights were the feeding mantas in Gau. The video posted on youtube shows their graceful ballet & was also captured with my macro lens. I think they can sense that I am set up for macro, so I’ll take one for the team & keep the tradition of filming Mantas with a macro lens on alive!. From Ornate Ghost Pipe Fish to Mantas, this trip had it all!!!!!!!
“NAI’A made a believer out of me! Fiji has been grossly underrated by both divers and scientists. Incredible fishes here and definitely worthy of protection.”
~ Dr. Gerry Allen, Ichthyologist & Author, Conservation International