The Sand Steenbras (Lithognathus Mormoryus) belongs to the class Osteichthyes, subclass Actinopterygii, order Perciformes, suborder Percoidei, family Sparidae. It is a beautiful elegant silver-colored fish with six very dark and highlighted vertical bands and an equal number of narrower and less evident bands, the body is long and compressed laterally, the profile is high and rounded. The lips are fleshy and the teeth are arranged in different rows; it can reach a length of 30 cm.
Cerianthus membranaceus, the cylinder anemone or coloured tube anemone, is aspecies of large, tube-dwelling anemone in the family Cerenthidae. It is native to the Mediterranean Sea and adjoining parts of the northeastern Atlantic Ocean.
The Lagoon triggerfish (Rhinecanthus aculeatus), also known as the blackbar Triggerfish, the Picasso triggerfish, or the Picassofish, is a triggerfish, up to 30 cm in length, found on reefs in the Indo-Pacific region. This species has been studied in a range of research contexts, from locomotion to color vision research. Lagoon triggerfish live in the reefs and sandy areas of coral reefs, where they eat just about anything that comes along, mostly including invertebrates and reef algae.
Spondylus gaederopus is a species of marine bivalve mollusc, a thorny oyster in the family Spondylidae. This species is endemic to the Mediterranean Sea. Spondylus gaederopus attaches itself to the substrate with its lower valve, which is usually white, while the upper valve is usually purple. Specimens that are all white, or all purple do, however, exist.
Boops boops commonly called the bogue, is a species of seabream native to the eastern Atlantic. Its common name in most languages refers to its large ("bug") eyes. The species is found off the coasts of Europe, Africa, the Azores and the Canary Islands, from Norway to Angola, and in the Mediterranean and Black Seas. It avoids brackish waters such as the Baltic Sea. A demeral and semi-pelagic, it can generally be found at a depth of 100 m, and infrequently down to 350 m.
Olindias phosphorica, or Cigar jellyfish, is a species of hydrozoan from the central and eastern Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea. The Mediterranean sea is a predominantly warm body of water, thus Olindias phosphorica is a warm-water Jellyfish. Global warming has facilitated the proliferation of the species throughout the Mediterranean sea.
The Clown Triggerfish (Balistoides conspicillum), also known as the Bigspotted Triggerfish, is a demersal marine fish belonging to the family Balistidae, or commonly called triggerfish. The Clown Triggerfish is a fish which grows up to 50 cm. Its body has a stocky appearance, oval shape and compressed laterally. The head is large and represents approximately one third of the body length. The mouth is small, terminal and has strong teeth. The Clown Triggerfish is widely distributed throughout the tropical and subtropical waters of the Indian Ocean and in the western Pacific Ocean.
In summer the beaches are populated with swimmers and tourists who enjoy the warm, crystal-clear waters but you just need to put on a simple mask and a snorkel to see that fish and marine species are also quite active in this period. If we are also equipped with a simple camera it is easy to film that marine life that practically lives in symbiosis with ours. ...
The Pagurus belongs to the Paguridae family. Hermit crabs are crustaceans with a curved and soft abdomen. It lives in empty shells of gastropods on which it sometimes attacks sponges or poisonous actinias to camouflage and defend itself. In case of danger it can withdraw completely inside the shell. The end of the tail of the hermit crab is suitable for strongly grasping the shell it always carries with it. When it grows and the size of the shell is no longer suitable is search for a new shell to protect yourself. In the video we see a hermit crab that has taken possession of the shell of the sea snail Phalium glaucum, a marine gastropod mollusc of the Cassidae family
September 10, 2023 marked the eightieth year since the sinking of the Piero Foscari ship on September 10, 1943 in Castiglioncello near Livorno (Italy). In this video I show you what remains of the wreck completely destroyed during the last war. Furthermore, after 80 years the sea has caused further deterioration of the structure. The wreck is located at a depth of between 15 and 16 metres.
The Indian Triggerfish (Melichthys indicus), also known as the black-finned Triggerfish, has a brown body and black fins with white lines at the base of the dossal and anal fins. It is found across the Indian Ocean. They can grow up to 25 cm. long. The Indian triggerfish usually feeds on hard-shelled mollusks and echinoderms, but some feed on algae and zooplankton.
In this video we can see a wonderful example of Spanish Mediterranean Dancer or Depilatory Sea Hare. It is a nudibranch mollusk, Aplysia depilans, that lives in the Mediterranean seabed at a depth ranging from 1 meter up to 10 meters. We met her in apnea in a rocky bottom around 2 meters. Elegant in its movements it seems to fly in the water with grace that would be the envy of a flamenco dancer.
The Emperor Angelfish (Pomacanthus imperator) is a species of marine angelfish. It is a reef-associated fish, native to the Indian and Pacific Oceans, from Red Sea to Hawai and the Austral Islands. This species is generally associated with stable populations and faces no major threats of extinction. It is a favorite of photographers, artists, and aquarists because of its unique, brilliant pattern of coloration.
I met this Calyx nicaeensis, Goblet Sponge, during a dive in the reefs of the Secche di Vada near Livorno. The name owes it to its characteristic goblet shape. According to some experts, this sponge has become extremely rare in the Mediterranean because it requires very stable water temperature and biological conditions: small variations are enough to decree its disappearance. We all know by now that climate change has a heavy impact on biological life, but few seem to realize that it also affects the deep sea.
We met the Red Squirrelfish (Sargocentron rubrum) in the sea of Cyprus while snorkelling among the rocks of the island. We did not expect to have this meeting in the Mediterranean because it is a tropical fish present in all tropical seas and in particular in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. The reason for this sighting, as indeed for other tropical species now present in the Mediterranean, we owe it to the climatic warming of the sea, which creates favorable conditions, and to the Lessepsian migration: that is, to the entry and stabilization of animal and tropical species from the Channel of Suez.
Martasteria or Thorny starfish (Marthasterias glacialis Linnaeus, 1758) is one of the most common starfish in the Mediterranean Sea, it is an echinoderm of the Asteriidae family. In this video we see it lying on a cliff that varies from 41 to 49 meters deep, rich in red Gorgonians of the Paramuricea clavata species and the classic yellow sponges of the Verongia species, therefore a guaranteed show of colors at the expense, however, of the visibility of the water about two or three meters. ...
The Red sponge or spirastrella (Spirastrella cunctatrix) is a sponge of the Spirastrellidae family belonging to the demospongiae class. It is an encrusting red-orange sponge (which can sometimes turn green, blue and grey), characterized by very evident channels that culminate in the osculum, rough to the touch due to the presence of spicules. It can also cover large expanses of seabed. It can be confused with the encrusting forms of Crambe crambe. It is common in the Mediterranean Sea up to 30 meters, sometimes present even at greater depths, in dimly lit, rocky environments, often in caves. Often associated with coralligenous and Astroides calycularis.
Garfish, Belone belone is a bony sea fish belonging to the Belonidae family. It commonly lives in the Mediterranean Sea and the eastern Atlantic, in coastal areas around the Canary Islands, the Azores, Madeira and Cape Verde, as well as in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. Garfish is a pelagic species, i.e. it lives mostly in the open sea and usually in the Mediterranean it approaches the coast from the end of August until October. ...
Acanthurus bariene is a tropical fish also commonly known as the bariene surgeonfish, blackspot surgeonfish, or eyespot surgeonfish. It was first named by René Primavère Lesson in 1831. This species is widespread in the tropical Indo-Pacific from Mozambique and the Maldives in the west to the Solomon Islands in the east and reaching north to the Ryūkyū and south to the Australian Great Barrier Reef. The habitat of this fish is the coral reefs where it lives on the outer side in depth. The juveniles live in shallow waters and in areas protected from the waves, finding refuge among the soft corals. It can be found between 6 and 50 meters of depth, rarely above 15 meters and usually below 30.
Phalium glaucum, common name the grey bonnet or glaucus bonnet, is a species of large sea snail, a marine gastropod mollusk in the family Cassidae, the helmet snails and bonnet snails. This species lives on sandy bottoms with seagrass meadows, in intertidal and shallow subtidal areas to a depth of about 10 m. Shell of Phalium glaucum can reach a length of 60-147 millimetres.
Sea pens are colonial marine cnidarians belonging to the order Pennatulacea. There are 14 families within the order and 35 extant genera; it is estimated that of 450 described species, around 200 are valid. Sea pens have a cosmopolitan distribution, being found in tropical and temperate waters worldwide, as well as from the intertidal to depths of more than 6100 m.Sea pens are grouped with the octocorals, together with sea whips (gorgonians).
Moray Eel is often identified as an aggressive and dangerous fish but as we can see from this video it is anything but an "evil titan of the seas". We are on a rocky and coral seabed typical of the Mediterranean Sea at about 46/48 meters deep, where we often meet the Mediterranean moray Moray eel, Muraena helena, and in this case it is seen in the typical diurnal pose, i.e. with the head and a small part of the body outside its den while it rests from the nocturnal raids in search of food but always vigilant in controlling its own territory. ...
Under the surface of the sea an exuberant life is "hidden" that develops in three dimensions, full of countless beings so different from each other where the competition for life sometimes becomes dramatic but always finds a delicate balance of coexistence. The interest in observation leads us to appreciate a wonderful aquatic life, both animal and plant, present at all depths.
Abalones or Haliotis are gastropod molluscs of the genus Haliotidae. In Italy the name that is used is Ear of Venus, a name that derives from the beauty of the pearlaceus side inside the shell. The external side as seen is completely different and looks like a concretion or a rock, and it is precisely for this reason that they are difficult to identify on the seabed or attached to rocks. Our Ear of Venus was in a hole a few meters deep and obviously we only found the shell, probably the residue of the usual octopus meal. ...
In this video we show you a particular form of mutualistic symbiosis, quite widespread in the marine aquatic environment, between a Labroides dimidiatus cleaner fish and a Titan Triggerfish. The cleaning operations constitute a mode of relationship in which the cleaner fish feeds on the ectoparasites, on the now dead skin tissue flaps and on the food residues of the host, which undergoes its care. The "customer", i.e. the fish being cleaned, gains a better fit of its body, while the cleaner gains nourishment.
Phorbas tenacior, Blue sponge is one of the first organisms to colonize new wrecks or any submerged vertical surface not yet colonized by marine organisms. In this video we see it on a wreck about 30 meters deep. Probably this wreck is quite recent, perhaps sunk between the first and second world wars, has several colonies of sponges including the blue encrusting sponge, which seems to prefer vertical walls away from direct sunlight. Obviously we also see it next to other species of sponges of the genus Tedania and Verongia but if we look at the part of the prow the presence of Phorbas tenacior ...
Rhizostoma pulmo, Barrel Jellyfish is one of the most common jellyfish in the Mediterranean Sea. In the video we see it swimming under the surface of the water letting itself be carried away by the current and the waves, this jellyfish is completely harmless and we can easily touch it on the umbrella, the tentacles are however slightly stinging so it is advisable to stay away from it even if the irritations however, they resolve within a few minutes. ...
Astropecten jonstoni is a sea star of the family Astropectinidae. Starfishes of genus Astropecten live on mobile seabed (sandy, muddy or gravel seabed) and they remain largely buried under sediment during the day. During the late afternoon and the night starfishes go out to hunt mainly bivalve molluscs, which are their favourite preys. Unlike other Astropecten, this species is active and easy to find during day, especially in early morning and late afternoon. However, if they perceive a danger or if they are disturbed, in this case by a diver who is snorkelling as you can see in the video we are showing you, they tend to get covered up quickly. This species lives only in the Mediterranean Sea and it prefers sandy seabed at low depths as between 1 and 12 m.
Reteporella grimaldii is a species of bryozoans in the family Reteporidae. It is composed of a colony of small animals that form a limestone substrate which takes the form of a refined lace. Hence the name of sea lace. The animals that compose it live on organic particles, plankton, filtering the water carried by the current. The Reteporella can take on different colors based on the species and the environmental conditions in which it lives. We have little information on the environment in which it lives but we can say with certainty, based on our direct experience, that it is possible to meet it from 10 meters up to 100 meters deep. The video we show you was shot in the Mediterranea Sea at 56 meters deep.
The vessel EDRO III, flying the flag of Sierra Leone, ran aground to Cyprus in the area of the Maritime Caves off Pegeia in the county of Paphos,on 8 October 2011, during a storm with rough seas and following the failure of the engine which prevented her from being controlled. The shipwreck occurred during a voyage from Cyprus, Limassol, to Rhodes with a cargo of plasterboard. The ship had a crew of nine sailors including the commander: seven of Albanian nationality and two of Egyptian nationality. Rescue was activated quickly, and thanks a British military helicopter present in Cyprus, the crew was saved.
Naso lituratus is a species of fish in the family Acanthuridae, the tangs and unicornfishes. Its common names include barcheek unicornfish, naso tang, and orange-spine unicornfish. Unique to members of Acanthuridae, including Naso lituratus, are the Epulopiscium bacteria. These bacteria influence the digestion of Naso lituratus, helping them process the algae in their diet. Naso lituratus can be found in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. This species can be easily recognised by two bright orange forward-hooked spines on the caudal peduncle (the tail base), its orange lips and black face mask. The body is brownish grey with yellow nape and there is a broad black band on the dorsal fin. It reaches about 45 cm in length.
We publish another encounter with the Sea hare, Aplysia depilans, this time which took place on a depth of about 42/45 meters. We are on a not very high rock wall about 4/5 miles from the coast where, due to the now increasingly present mucillage, animals and marine organisms seem to have disappeared. ...
The Savalia savaglia, commonly known as gold coral, is a species colonial in the family Parazoanthidae. This organism is commonly called "false black coral". It owes its name to its ability to produce a dark-colored horny skeleton, usually blackish. The colonies are generally settled on pre-existing gorgonians skeletons and can grow with ramifications that far exceed one meter in length. The polyps of this coral have six tentacles which is why the species is part of Hexacorallia group. They are bright yellow or whitish, and very large and showy (2-3 cm high), similar to those of Parazoanthus axinellae. Sprout very well from the tissue that lines the skeleton (coenenchyme) and have available alternates, showing smooth tentacles. The polyps do not fall as those of other species but can retract and close in on themselves.
Demosponges are the most diverse class in the phylum Porifera. They include 76.2% of all species of sponges with nearly 8,800 species worldwide (World Porifera Database). Sponges, contrary to what one might think at first sight, are very simple multicellular animal organisms very similar in shape and appearance to plant organisms. There are no apparatus in the sponges and there is no trace of a nervous system.
I met these beautiful colonies of Parazoanthus axinellae during a snorkeling activity in the coastal caves of the island of Pantelleria. In my experience as a diver I have never encountered these sea daisies at almost surface level; evidently in this case the colony of Parazoanthus axinellae has found particularly favorable environmental conditions of light and sea currents
During a scuba dive in a beautiful Mediterranean coral reef of Savalia savaglia and Paramuricea clavata, at a depth between 72 and 76 meters, I met this unknown marine organism for the first time. Curiosity prompted me to carry out a series of searches to understand precisely what I was dealing with. Research has not yielded a satisfactory answer. The questions I asked myself were many. Based on my experience of many years of scuba diving it could be an animal belonging to the phylum Prorifera.