I love animal encounters underwater, especially when the encounter is perpetrated by the animal instead of the diver—when they approach you, instead of you chasing them. One of my favorite encounters happened a few years ago in very shallow water. I had just received a new underwater housing for my camera and was anxious to try it out. We didn't have a boat going out that morning so I decided to just go in the shallow water at the end of the dock. We had a few cinder blocks lying on the bottom, which makes for a great habitat for fish and critters. When I first got down on the bottom there were several juvenile angelfish swimming around.
As I was shooting them, there was a sudden blast of sand that blew right in front of my camera. Looking around, I could not find where it came from. I went back to shooting and there it came again. This time when I looked up there was a good sized octopus staring at me.
He reached down with one arm and grabbed an arm full of sand. Raising it up to its siphon, it blew the sand at me. Forget the angelfish; I started to shoot the octopus. He quit blowing sand at me while the photos were being taken. He was just posing away on top of the cinder block. Over the next few weeks I would return to take more shots. Every time he saw the camera, he would come out and pose for me again.
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