Apr 182014
 

Last year we popped into our friend Michael’s shop in Bonaire, and we were immediately captivated by a series of stunning portraits on the wall.  The artist’s use of color to convey depth, realism and emotion was unlike anything I’d ever seen.

Michael The Art of Henk Roozendaal   Painter of Bonaire

Portrait of Michael by Henk Roozendaal

We were soon introduced to Henk Roozendaal - the talented, soft-spoken and kind artist behind these unique works.  Henk and his family moved to Bonaire from The Netherlands in 1999, and soon after Henk began creating portraits of the many unique personalities who call Bonaire home.

In addition to portraits, Henk is known for his vibrant murals.  Over ten years ago, Henk began painting the exterior of Cultimara Supermarket (now called Top Supermarket).  Last month I photographed some of these murals while strolling through downtown Kralendijk.

Henk Captain Don 1024x768 The Art of Henk Roozendaal   Painter of Bonaire

Captain Don Stewart – Mural on Top Supermarket Wall

Henk Couple on Motorcycle 1024x768 The Art of Henk Roozendaal   Painter of Bonaire

Henk Lady with Grapes 1024x768 The Art of Henk Roozendaal   Painter of Bonaire

Woman with Grapes

Henk two windsurfers 1024x768 The Art of Henk Roozendaal   Painter of Bonaire

Windsurfers – by Henk Roozendaal

Henk Woman  1024x768 The Art of Henk Roozendaal   Painter of Bonaire

Have you ever seen a supermarket this beautiful?

For those who would like to own a piece of his work, Henk also takes commissions.

Apr 112014
 

Hawaiian drone videographer Eric Sterman has captured incredible aerial footage of humpback whales enjoying the waters of the north shore of Oahu.  Watch closely, and towards the middle of the video you will spot a pod of whales surfing the waves at the famed Pipeline surf spot.

To see more of Eric’s amazing work-

http://instagram.com/ericsterman/

http://www.ericsterman.com

Apr 052014
 

Mr. Reeftraveler recently stumbled upon this interesting scene in Bonaire.  The spanish hogfish is lying on its side, while the moray is nestled on top of it.

Hogfish and Moray S 1024x819 What is Going on Here?

Is this simply chance, or is this a specific behavior?

Here’s a side view.

Moray and Hogfish 1024x731 What is Going on Here?

Photo by Mr. Reeftraveler

The moray is clearly lying on top of the spanish hogfish, which seems not to mind at all.

Are there any marine biologists, naturalists or avid fish watchers out there who can tell me what is going on here?

Mar 282014
 

This post is written by Mr. Reeftraveler (aka Steve).

Mr RT Mr. Reeftraveler Recounts his Tamoya Oboya Sighting in Bonaire

Mr. Reeftraveler

While following Meredith toward our exit from an early afternoon dive on Bari Reef in Bonaire, I had the scuba diver’s equivalent of a Michael Corleone moment: “Just when I thought I was out…they pull me back in.”

At a depth of around 10 feet (3m), with just over 600 psi (41 bar) left in the tank and my buddy headed up the ladder, I was taking a last look back toward the reef when a critter a few feet below the surface caught my eye.

Before I could fully focus on it, the pattern match clicked in my head.  Squid.  That’s where we usually see them – clearish, streamlined with trailing tentacles, hanging just beneath the waterline.  A second later, more thoughts flashed

Not Squid – Jelly?  Need a photo of this.  Let me swim closer.

Box Jelly 1024x731 Mr. Reeftraveler Recounts his Tamoya Oboya Sighting in Bonaire

Tamoya Oboya, by Mr. Reeftraveler

Boxy clear head and brightly striped tentacles.  What the heck?  (or the NJ native equivalent)

Don’t remember seeing this in any of the Humann & DeLoach fish or marine creature identification books.

Looks like a big sea wasp, or Australian box jelly, but the tentacles are all wrong.  There are four, and they’re not jelly looking at all – they are opaque and striped in a reddish copper and white banding, with no signs of trailing tendrils.

Box Jellyfish Australian Mr. Reeftraveler Recounts his Tamoya Oboya Sighting in Bonaire

Box Jellyfish/Chironex Fleckeri – Photo from Wikipedia Commons – Guido Gautsch, Toyota, Japan

It’s getting closer.  Back off.  Breathe.  Check gauge.  400 psi.

Dad always said beware critters that make no effort to hide. Those tentacles qualify.  Respect.

Hmmm – there are 4-5 fish swimming alongside it.   Maybe silversides or some kind of juveniles?  Is that one inside the jelly?

Box Jelly 2 1024x731 Mr. Reeftraveler Recounts his Tamoya Oboya Sighting in Bonaire

Tamoya Oboya, by Mr. Reeftraveler

Time to get some video and get home without bumping into this thing.

Closing on 250psi.  Low on air, time to exit.  Is that another chain moray in 6 feet?  OK, maybe just one more shot…

On exit, got the instant ID from another rare breed – the ever-helpful and supremely knowledgeable Michael G of Bonaire Help Desk – who confirmed it as the Bonaire Banded Box Jellyfish, aka Tamoya Ohboya.  Turns out it is not in the Humann & DeLoach books (yet) and its Wikipedia listing reports roughly 50 confirmed sightings, 45 on Bonaire.  In my 35 years of diving Bonaire, this was certainly a first for me – and a moment I will not soon forget.

For more on Tamoya Oboya-

Tamoya oboya – A Rare Sighting in Bonaire