Five Tips: How To Spot Hidden Marine Life During Your Dive

Underwater Photo of a Nudibranch

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Nudibranchs and other camouflaged creatures are waiting — here’s how to find them.

Camouflaged critters include some of the most interesting in the ocean, but spotting them can feel like a game of Where’s Waldo. To give you an edge, here are five tips for finding these elusive creatures.

1. Slow Down The slower you swim, the better chance you’ll have of spotting those camouflaged creatures waiting for you to pass by.

2. Get Low Swimming close to the bottom and scanning the top of the reef line is a good way to spot sneaky fellows, such as octopuses, as they attempt to slink away unnoticed.

3. Learn Their Habits Many hard-to-find critters have adapted to blend in with certain backgrounds, such as pygmy seahorses that only live on like-colored gorgonians. Learn where they hang out, and focus your attention there.

4. Look for the Eyes Even when their bodies blend with the background, their eyes will give them away. A stingray can bury its body in the sand, but if you see two dark eyes jutting from the seafloor, you’ll know what’s underneath.

5. Ask a Local Local divemasters often know the locations of resident critters. Men- tion what you hope to see, and chances are, the divemaster can take you right to it.

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