In 1996 I decided I'd rather live on an island again and after looking around a bit I decided to move to the island
of Hawaii, known as 'The Big Island'. I lived there for three years and, as you can imagine, did a lot of diving and

Hawaii is a unique place to dive. Because it is so isolated in the middle of the Pacific it's difficult for fish species
to reach the islands from other regions. The ones that do make it over often evolve into species endemic to
Hawaii (found nowhere else in the world.)

As a result you don't see the variety of hard and soft corals that you might see somewhere else like Fiji or Palau,
but the fish diversity, big animals and amazing topography make up for it. I lived on the Kona (west) coast of the
island. The Kona coast is world-famous for its calm, clear water and easy diving.

All photos were taken with a variety of cameras: a Nikonos V and Nikon N90 film camera, an Olympus 4040, a
Nikon D70 and a Nikon D300 digital cameras. Underwater light was provided by two Sea & Sea YS-120 strobes.

Click on the small image to see it full-size.           Click here for slideshow.           Google Maps
Map of Hawaii Waipio Valley, looking toward the sea Thousand-foot waterfalls at Waipio Valley Hamakua Coast, north of Hilo Waipio Valley
Pololu Valley Lava river beneath the surface Noth Kona Kona sunset Art Koch tries underwater photgraphy
Diver and a Spanish Dancer nudibranch eggs Black and yellow flatworm Diver at Paradise Pinnacle Diver and moray eels at Honaunauw Plate coral formation at Honaunau
Diver photographing a Frogfish Lizardfish Hairy Hermit Crab Stocky Hawkfish Diver at cave entrance
Diver photographing barracudas Hawaiian Lobster in cavern Hiding in the sand Nudibranchs and eggs Colorful flatworm
Divers on a reef Longnose Hawkfish Scrambled-Egg nudibranch Diver on the reef Crown-Of-Thorns starfish
Hairy Hermit Crab Blue Dragon Nudibranch Hawaiian Turkeyfish Gold-Lace nudibranch Female Harlequin Shirmp, with small male
Diver and Raccoon Butterfly Fish, Honaunau Female Harlequin Shirmp, with small male Diver and Longfin Anthia, Honaunau Hawaiian Lobsters in cavern Hawaiian Lobster in cavern
Scrawled Filefish Octopus Hawaiian Turkeyfish Scrambled-Egg nudibranch Spotted Boxfish
Bullseye Lobster in cavern Threadfin Butterfly Fish Juvenile Rockmover Wrasee (aka 'Dragon Wrasse') Whitetip Shark in cavern Diver at Honaunau
Potter's Angelfish Longnose Hawkfish Shortnose Wrasse Flameback Shrimp Yellow Tangs
Spotted Eagle Ray at Honaunau Spotted Boxfish Tinker's Butterfly Fish Flame Angelfish Thornback Cowfish
Arc-Eye Hawkfish hiding in coral Green Frogfish Tinker's Butterfly Fish Diver and sunken sailboat, Kailua harbor Lava meets the sea
Tang in color phase change Flame Angelfish Spinner Dolphins Bluefin Trevally Diver at cavern entrance
Snowflake Moray Crown-Of-Thorns Starfish Longfinned Anthia Longfinned Anthia Longfinned Anthia
Longfinned Anthia Hawaiian Lobster in cavern

Wire Coral Gobies are very small fish that live on Wire Coral. Wire Coral grows in long,
thin wire-like strands from the reef, hanging out into open water.

Wire Coral Goby Wire Coral Goby Wire Coral Goby Wire Coral Goby Wire Coral Goby

There are hundreds of Green Sea turtles living in Hawaii. You can often see them sunning themselves on the
rocks and beaches and in special places in the ocean they come to have fish clean parasites from their skin.
Turtles can be shy but if you approach them slowly and from below you can often get right next to them.

Green Turtle Green Turtle Green Turtle Green Turtle Green Turtle being cleaned by Tangs
Turtle in a tide pool Green Turtle and divers Green Turtle Turtle silhouette

Kona is world-famous for its manta rays. These creatures can grow up to maximum of 25 foot wingspan, although the ones
in Kona are usually around 12-14 feet. Manta are nonaggressive. Unlike stingrays they have no 'stinger' on their tails.
The manta ray dive in Kona is done at night. The divers shine their lights through the water, attracting plankton. In the
photographs the white spots you see in the pictures is light reflected off the plankton. The mantas come to eat the plankton.
It's quite something to see a 2000-lb fish looping through the water a foot away from your mask!

Manta Rays Manta Rays Manta Rays Manta Rays Manta Rays
Manta Rays Manta Rays

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