23 September – 4 October 2009

What the heck is muck?

We have been diving in the Lembeh muck for the past 12 days and finding it so interesting we could hardly tear ourselves away from it. We must be mad, you’d think.  How can diving silt and sand be interesting? Well, it is interesting because in seemingly nothing, we find LIFE. Life with variety and color that you can never imagine in your wildest dreams.

And life in the muck begins with babies. We have been seeing a huge assortment of babies that we must show what the “Nursery of the Seas” mean from the critter angle.

Baby Cowfish that hovers and rotates in position like a little helicopter

Baby Cowfish hovers and rotates in position like a little helicopter

A bright painted frogfish a mere 4 mm on the sand

Bright painted frogfish a mere 4 mm on the sand

A wiggling sweetlips so small and frisky

A wiggling sweetlips so small and frisky

Baby Banggai cardinalfish so small it's white dotted spots is not evident yet. Here it has a sea urchin for a home

Baby Banggai cardinalfish so small its classic white dotted spots is not evident yet. Here it has a sea urchin for a home

Not quite the mommy, this lttle one takes care of its future siblings by fanning and plucking out dead clownfish eggs

Not quite the mommy, this lttle one takes care of its future siblings by fanning and plucking out dead eggs from the healthy clownfish eggs

How could this brilliant yellow boxfish ever think we can't see it? It was indeed tiny but hey, it's yellow!

How could this brilliant yellow boxfish ever think we can’t see it? It was indeed tiny but hey, it’s yellow with polka dots!

How our brilliant Indonesian guide Paulus can find these minute creatures is beyond us. This baby nudibranch is perfect though. So small but bearing everything a nudibranch should be. Beautiful!

How our brilliant Indonesian guide Paulus can find these minute creatures is beyond us. This baby nudibranch is perfect. So small yet bearing everything a nudibranch should be –  beautiful!

These little lionfish were all over the sand in almost every dive. Come to think of it, scorpionfish of all types - and I mean ALL types or species abound here

Many species of little lionfish were all over the sand in almost every dive. Come to think of it, scorpionfish of all types – and I mean ALL types or species abound here