DIVE LOG inc Sportdiving Magazine

NAOMI STRONG TALKS NUDIBRANCHS IN VICTORIA

I fell in love with sea slugs the moment I saw my first nudibranch. My instructor pointed it out to me during my open water course - It was tiny and white, it couldn't have been more than 5mm in length. I was intrigued.

After completing my open water certification I found myself researching nudibranchs to find out more. It opened up a whole new world that, prior to scuba diving, I knew nothing about. I was fascinated by their vast array of colours, shapes and sizes. There are over 3,000 species of nudibranchs (nudis) with more being discovered each year. I began to search for them on my local dives in Port Philip Bay. Spotting nudis became a highlight on dives and I came to realise that you had to ‘get your eye in’ to spot them. Once you were familiar with a species, you would start to see it regularly. Nudibranch ID books and websites had ample

Species: Coryphellina poenicia Photographer: Steven Kuiter Instagram: @stevenkuiter

information on tropical and warm water species, but I could not readily find information on species found in our temperate, southern waters. So for a while I gave up on the ID part and simply enjoyed finding them. Some years later when I bought a camera and started my underwater photography journey, the passion to ID (and frustration) was rekindled. Luckily after lots of google searching I came across “Nudibranchs and related molluscs”, an excellent reference book by Robert Burn (Bob). Bob Burn is the grandfather of sea slugs in Victoria and the book he wrote became my nudi bible. Scuba diving is a small world and I started to meet

Species: Phyllodesmium serratum Photographer: Mel Wu. Instagram: @little.ocean.mel

| DIVE LOG Australasia inc. Sportdiving Magazine | JANUARY 2020 | ISSUE 378 | www.divelog.net.au 34

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