Moray eels and other fantastic nature photos

I’ve dived at the beautiful Mokohinau Islands, but wasn’t lucky enough to come across a sight like this.

That’s Amore. Yellow moray (Gymnothorax prasinus) eels share their crevice home in an underwater cliff at the Mokohinau Islands, October 2008  Source: NIWA
That’s Amore. Yellow moray (Gymnothorax prasinus) eels share their crevice home in an underwater cliff at the Mokohinau Islands, October 2008 Source: NIWA

The eels were photographed by Auckland-based scientist James Williams near an underwater cliff at the Mokohinau Islands, off the northeast coast of the North Island. The National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) holds a photo competition for its staff working in the field each year and Williams was the supreme winner this time.

Judges said of this year’s winning shot: “This is a great shot with excellent lighting and finely focused detail bringing out the pair of eels and their surrounding habitat. Cute, humorous and colourful.”

Other winners included: Crispin Middleton, Jean Keddy and Daniel Leduc. Their photographs featured a pre-dawn start for scientists on New Zealand’s most northerly harbour, Parengarenga, a male nematode seen through an interfence contrast microscope, a John Dory cruising past the entrance to Northern Arch at the Poor Knights Marine Reserve and a spotlight on Tapu te Ranga.

Other finalists’ photos can be viewed here.

Scientist Meredith Lowe and Masters Student Tegan Evans on a pre-dawn start to make the most of early low tides in New Zealand's most Northerly Harbour- Parengarenga. The team was in the harbour to study the assemblages of juvenile fish associated with the extensive seagrass meadows. Source: NIWA
Scientist Meredith Lowe and Masters Student Tegan Evans on a pre-dawn start to make the most of early low tides in New Zealand’s most Northerly Harbour- Parengarenga. The team was in the harbour to study the assemblages of juvenile fish associated with the extensive seagrass meadows. Source: NIWA
This picture was taken at Greta point (2012) using an Olympus SC100 camera connected to an Olympus BX53 compound microscope (400 x magnification). The specimen was observed with interference contrast microscopy, which allows to observe colourless structures of different thickness, and which produced the blue hue in the picture. The nematode specimen is an adult male of the genus Metadasynemella from an area on Chatham Rise crest rich in phosphorite nodule deposits sampled in 2011 (TAN1103). The specimen is about 3/4 of a millimetre in length, and is characterised by an elaborate cuticle (skin) often found in nematodes inhabiting coarse sediments. Source: NIWA
This picture was taken at Greta point (2012) using an Olympus SC100 camera connected to an Olympus BX53 compound microscope (400 x magnification). The specimen was observed with interference contrast microscopy, which allows to observe colourless structures of different thickness, and which produced the blue hue in the picture. The nematode specimen is an adult male of the genus Metadasynemella from an area on Chatham Rise crest rich in phosphorite nodule deposits sampled in 2011 (TAN1103). The specimen is about 3/4 of a millimetre in length, and is characterised by an elaborate cuticle (skin) often found in nematodes inhabiting coarse sediments. Source: NIWA
A John Dory cruises at around 40 metres past the entrance to Northern Arch at the Poor Knights Marine Reserve, northern New Zealand. The reserve has been in place since 1981 and is now a haven for marine life. Source: NIWA
A John Dory cruises at around 40 metres past the entrance to Northern Arch at the Poor Knights Marine Reserve, northern New Zealand.
The reserve has been in place since 1981 and is now a haven for marine life. Source: NIWA
April 2013 - Tapu te Ranga Marine Reserve Source: NIWA
April 2013 – Tapu te Ranga Marine Reserve Source: NIWA

 

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