Leafy Sea Dragon (Phycodurus eques)

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Charles Krebs
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Leafy Sea Dragon (Phycodurus eques)

Post by Charles Krebs »

Normally I'm over in the microscope section, but on trip to San Diego last week I stopped by the Birch Aquarium at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla. I photographed one of the most incredible little creatures I have seen. This Sea Dragon is found in the ocean waters of southern Western Australia, South Australia and further east along the coastline of Victoria province. Thet are a protected species. A relative of the sea horse, it moves extremely slowly, drifting with the water current and looking very much like the seaweed surrounding it.


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Ken Ramos
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Post by Ken Ramos »

I can certainly see where it would blend in nicely with its surroundings. A most beautiful and unusual creature. It makes you wonder what else is out there that blends in so well with its surroundings that we never notice them. Thanks for sharing this Charlie, an excellent photograph as usual. :D
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Post by Bald Eagle »

Fantastic capture of a wonderful specimen. This is the Holy Grail for Salt Water Enthusiasts. I know, I've been one for twenty yrs or so. I'm glad that they are protected. The only people outside of Australia that will ever have them are Research Institutes and Professional Sea Aquariums. And I hope it stays that way. :D :D :D
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Post by MikeBinOKlahoma »

These guys are gorgeous. I saw them when I visited the Tampa aquarium several years ago. Amazong things.
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Post by MacroMike »

Hello Charles.

Nice image with beautiful color and sharp detail. Many people don't understand the challenge of shooting through aquarium glass - reflection, diffraction, absorption, etc.

Here's a link to one I captured at the Tampa Aquarium although it's not quite as good as yours. http://www.photomacrography1.net/images ... se2--3.jpg
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Post by hidden.forms »

What a surreal capture, great shot :D :D
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Post by nephiliim »

Wonderfull shot charles,

I really like the "neon-glow" look on the extremities and the contrast with the background.
Neighbours of me tried to breed them for a while to support a breeding program. But the aquarium they had was so large and these creatures are so high maintenance that they had to quit the program and return the dragons to the zoo they where helping.

Again nice image, good job and congratulations,

All the best,

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Post by piotr »

Amazing shot, Charlie. It is difficult to take a decent picture like this via aquarium glass. A few months ago I took a picture of the very same sea dragon, I think. Too bad I didn't know you were arriving to San Diego, although I was out of town for past three weeks...

Charles Krebs
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Post by Charles Krebs »

Thanks all!

Piotr... I had thought of contacting you, but it was a last minute deal, and time was pretty tightly scheduled. We had a few hours before the flight home so we went up to La Jolla.

Aquarium tanks are a challange, and some of the tanks at the Birch Aquarium are really thick plexi! (At the really large tank they had a sample of the "window" that was used... I think it was about 11 inches thick). Fortunately the Sea Dragon was in a small tank, and the optical problems were less severe.

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Red Seven
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Post by Red Seven »

Outstanding image! I sell medium and high end reproduced art in my store and with several hundred images in stock I don't think I have anything more beautiful on the walls. If you can blow this up to a good size and retain that vibrancy and clarity you could have the beginning of a profitable line here.
Well done and thanks for sharing!