Washing Machine!

Not too far from one of the underwater arches at Santa Barbara Island, there is an area where the waves crash and churn in the gap between the reef wall and the island wall. You have to approach this area very carefully, but it is an awesome sight.

School Under Arch

A school of blacksmiths at an underwater arch against backdrop of kelp forest. This was one of many breathtaking scenes we were treated to during our two-day trip aboard the Peace Dive Boat at Santa Barbara Island.

It Must be Just Right!

In early spring, male #garibaldi begins to establish a spawning area in his territory that contains specific types of red algae. He continuously grooms and cleans the algae to prepare the nesting site. This takes as long as one month. When the nest is ready the male will approach females and attempt to entice them to come to his nesting site by making a loud clucking sound and then dashing over to the nest. Females are very selective. The nest must be well groomed and already have eggs deposited. They inspect the nest site and if she approves of the nest, egg color, and the male, she will lay her eggs which are then fertilized by the male. He immediately drives away the female to prevent her from eating the eggs. Several females may deposit eggs in the same nest and a female may deposit eggs in several different nests. The male carefully grooms and fans the eggs. He aggressively protects the nest.

Quiet Wonder

Watching California sea lions freely gliding through the water fills me with serenity and wonder. It's simply amazing how fast they can swim and turn so quickly.

I'm Seeing Purple!

Certain dive sites around Santa Barbara Island are among few places other than Farnsworth Bank and Gull Island where you can see purple hydrocoral (Stylaster californicus). While the colonies here are not as large as ones at Farnsworth Bank, but the colonies here looked healthy.