When we were pulling our kayak up among the rocks, I saw all these yellow patches under the water that I thought were dead leaves. Turned out they were fish.
These Crocodile Needlefish were hovering at the surface. Way less skittish and a bit more creepy than their smaller cousins the keeltail needlefish.
Apparently these feed on plankton and algae, which would explain why they were schooling way above the reef.
These are supposed to be a little greener, so either this was a particularly dark individual or I got the white balance wrong.
Mostly sure about the ID here. It was definitely quietly hovering as described in the book.
Thanks to naomi_bot on Flickr for the ID help.
I was pretty psyched to see a slug while snorkeling, but this was kind of hard to miss. The book says they grow to 5 inches, and this was at least that, if not more. Giant slug.
Not hellebore, not false hellebore, but helleborine. This one's an orchid though, so pretty easy to tell apart the similarly-named lilies.
Also, thanks for the tip, randomtruth! No Piperia of fringecups, but I'd actually never seen this orchid before either (even though it was ubiquitous), so still a win.
I'd seen parrotfish on previous snorkelings, but I'd never actually heard them eat! Every time they bit into the coral they made a loud *crunch.*
A beatiful fish. Deserves a better shot.
I took about a billion pics of this bird. Damn canopy birds. Damn them.
Still haven't ID'd this. Saw it in a bird book in a store, then forgot the name. Later...
Apparently there's only one toad living on the Hawaiian islands: the cane toad! This thing is sitting in sea water. Hence the name?
One of the gingers. Need to look it up.
This guy was in a crack about 10 ft down or so. The process: dive down, struggle to get a pic, start suffocating, resurface, repeat. Taking pics while snorkeling is hard.
Another common one from most areas I've gone diving or snorkeling.
Well, this one was.
These were pretty common in reef cracks around the shallower areas of the cove.
The state fish.
This little moray popped out of a hole, swam across the pool, and backed into another hole. Weird.
Sort of stumbled across this Hawaiian Monk Seal. It's endangered!
Another species I don't seem to be able to photograph properly.