Coral home scars of Heliocidaris tuberculata urchins #marineexplorer
By constantly scraping the same place each day, some urchins create a home scar. These are often made in rock, but in this pic you can see them in the side of living corals. The scraped area has then been colonised by encrusting red algae. Lord Howe Island
Carcharhinus galapagensis shark #marineexplorer
The Galapagos shark is a global species which prefers islands with rugged underwater terrain. It is classified as near threatened, primarily due to fishing pressure. Thanks to the Marine Park at Lord Howe Island, it is not considered threatened here. www.iucnredlist.org/details/41736/0.
Trachypoma macracanthus Strawberry cod #marineexplorer
One of my favourite cute fish - also called the toadstool groper. It's a sea bass that is also called a rock cod - like hundreds of other species
Lord Howe lagoon #marineexplorer
Wave exposure is one of the most important factors in determining marine communities. Coral lagoons provide the complex habitat and shelter that support high fish biodiversity. Deeper, more exposed outside sites typically have less biodiversity but can support schools of larger fish species.
Chromis hypsilepis puller in abundance #marineexplorer
One of the most abundant species at Lord Howe Island this year is the one spot puller. Unlike some other damsels, this fish is easy to identify by the distinctive white spot in front of the tail.
Coral slab #marineexplorer
Corals are animals which form the structure of tropical reefs. Thousands of species depend on this structure, leading to some of the highest biodiversity on earth. Lord Howe Island
Olympic Park Estuary #marineexplorer
Once a polluted industrial area, Olympic Park has been restored with parklands, wetlands and a few cool spiral mounds like this one. I'm just not quite sure what's buried underneath...
North Bondi panorama #marineexplorer
North Bondi is popular on many fronts - swimmers, divers, and even the grey nurse sharks that have moved in in recent months. It doesn't look too shabby either.
Wetland shore zones #marineexplorer
Wetland intertidal area can have quite clear "zones" from low to high tide marks and beyond. In this pic you can see the dark water, below low tide mark, with tiny white dots indicating the birds. Then you have light brown mud flat, low reddish-brown succulents like glasswort, mid-green taller rushes and arrowgrass, then finally yellow-green short trees like mangroves.
Wetlands bird sanctuary #marineexplorer
For much of human history, wetlands have been undervalued - filled in or drained to enable development. But the importance of wetlands to migratory species and ecosystems in general is increasingly recognised, leading to their preservation and restoration. Olympic Park, Sydney