Reef Central Online Community

Home Forum Here you can view your subscribed threads, work with private messages and edit your profile and preferences View New Posts View Today's Posts

Find other members Frequently Asked Questions Search Reefkeeping ...an online magazine for marine aquarists Support our sponsors and mention Reef Central

Go Back   Reef Central Online Community > Special Interest Group (SIG) Forums > SCUBA/Snorkeling
Register Blogs FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read

Notices

User Tag List

Reply
Thread Tools
Old 10/04/2017, 04:32 AM   #426
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
As I understand it, the Keys are open to anybody, but a lot of things you might want while there are still closed. The motel we use in Marathon, The Blackfin Resort, is closed. All the state parks are closed until further notice. I checked with a couple of charter scuba/snorkel operators and they were closed as well.

I'd check with http://www.keysrecovery.org/ or google 'Florida Keys Recovery' and you'll get a good over all idea of what is going on at the time you get to Miami.

Our trip to Ft Jefferson and the Dry Tortugas has been cancelled as the National Park is also closed until further notice.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10/07/2017, 11:50 AM   #427
sdweller
Registered Member
 
sdweller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Key Largo, Florida
Posts: 47
The Keys are open ! Come visit and eat at your favorite establishment , stay at your
favorite resort , and dive and snorkel with your favorite dive shop . I can only speak
for Key Largo as our shop is there . We need visitors so come on down !
http://www.seadwellers.com


sdweller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10/27/2017, 12:15 AM   #428
flacousa
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 14
The upper keys are open when I visited a couple weeks ago, went snorkeling at John Pennekamp, the water temp was nice but a little cloudy, WARNING we encountered lots of jelly fish, several people in the boat got hit including me, it was hard to avoid near the Christ statue, here a little video a shot.
https://youtu.be/S61g_IuGX3Q


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


flacousa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10/27/2017, 02:16 PM   #429
redwhiteandink
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 19
Alot of things are open now i went october 12-18 to the keys and went snorkeling on french reef and molasses reef both seemed quite sad lots of fish but not much corals, all the public beaches are open as we also went to annes beach in islamorada and smathers beach in key west great time the water temp was in the 80s that morning we went snorkeling


redwhiteandink is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11/06/2017, 06:35 AM   #430
sdweller
Registered Member
 
sdweller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Key Largo, Florida
Posts: 47
Had great conditions on the reef this weekend ! Blue water and north winds
made for excellent dives . Had a big group in and everyone enjoyed themselves .

Sea Dwellers


sdweller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/04/2018, 05:25 AM   #431
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
I'd love to go snorkeling soon, but the high temp in Cape Coral, Fl today is forecast to be 48F... brrrrrr!

On a side note the History of Diving Museum in the Keys had an all time record yesterday with 125 visitors. We've been there and it's well worth the visit. Lots of nice displays and some crazy expensive dive helmets among the 3 or 4 dozen in their interactive display!


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/04/2018, 01:36 PM   #432
sdweller
Registered Member
 
sdweller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Key Largo, Florida
Posts: 47
It is a bit cold in the Keys ! The History of Diving Museum is well
worth the trip . Happy Holidays !

Sea Dwellers


Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_0933.jpg (58.2 KB, 35 views)
sdweller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/15/2018, 06:40 PM   #433
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
Since there is so little going on here during the cold, I'll tell you about our experience walking the beach here in SW Florida. Yesterday my wife and I went out to the Lighthouse Beach on Sanibel and did some collecting. The best days only happen a few times a year, in the winter, after a rare cold front passes through. That only happens 3 to 6 times from November to March. The front brings winds from the NW which never happens any other time here and they wash more good live stuff up on the beach. My wife collects shells and takes photos, I tear apart sponges looking for small critters. It was a fun day as we both have just started doing volunteer work for the Bailey Mathews National Shell Museum as Shell Ambassadors. We help the snowbirds and vacationers idea shells and explain the beach eco systems. I draw a lot of attention because I'm the only one tearing sponges apart.

Yesterday's collections:

4 yellow snapping shrimp (aka pistol shrimp)




3 green snapping shrimp




10-12 porcelain crabs in various sizes and colors






2 amenones




Finally a sea squirt tunicate that is a bit bigger than a golf ball



The tunicate in in my 65g shallow reef and has burried itself in the sand with just the tip of it's... it's... mouth(?) sticking out of the sand.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/16/2018, 12:21 AM   #434
Barber Reefer
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 11
very cool


Barber Reefer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01/19/2018, 04:06 AM   #435
SaltySully
Registered Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Big Pine Key, Fl
Posts: 42
Ron I think that's a cucumber not a tunicate.

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk


SaltySully is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/22/2018, 06:29 AM   #436
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
You may be right, but I wouldn't bet on it as a sea cucumber or a tunicate as yet.

I was unsure just what it was when I collected it, but I was quite sure it wasn't illegal to collect per Sanibel Island, Lee County and State of Florida rules. I've collected and found lots of local sea cucumbers and they all have a different shape than this animal, they are more cigar shaped where this animal is very round with just a bit of cone shape at one end. Sea Cucumbers also have both feeding intake (with mouth parts) and an excrement end and act like worms. This animal has just one opening at the tip of the cone and both inhales and exhales water from this hole as if it were breathing.

It does look somewhat similar to a Sclerodactyla briareus, which is a cucumber, but it's more round and again, only one opening. Our best guess is that it's a Molgula occidentalis which is in fact a sandy-skinned tunicate. But I'm not 100% sure either.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/22/2018, 07:04 AM   #437
Diana A
Registered Member
 
Diana A's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: NJ shore
Posts: 612
This site really needs a like button! Ron I always enjoy reading your posts...a big fan of yours


__________________
diana

Current Tank Info: 60g SPS started May 2014 bare bottom.
Diana A is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/23/2018, 07:01 AM   #438
SaltySully
Registered Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Big Pine Key, Fl
Posts: 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
You may be right, but I wouldn't bet on it as a sea cucumber or a tunicate as yet.

I was unsure just what it was when I collected it, but I was quite sure it wasn't illegal to collect per Sanibel Island, Lee County and State of Florida rules. I've collected and found lots of local sea cucumbers and they all have a different shape than this animal, they are more cigar shaped where this animal is very round with just a bit of cone shape at one end. Sea Cucumbers also have both feeding intake (with mouth parts) and an excrement end and act like worms. This animal has just one opening at the tip of the cone and both inhales and exhales water from this hole as if it were breathing.

It does look somewhat similar to a Sclerodactyla briareus, which is a cucumber, but it's more round and again, only one opening. Our best guess is that it's a Molgula occidentalis which is in fact a sandy-skinned tunicate. But I'm not 100% sure either.
Its an odd critter for sure, I have never seen a tunicate with only one spout, or that moves more than just inflating and deflating. To me it looked like a sea apple in the picture.

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk


SaltySully is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/23/2018, 07:05 AM   #439
SaltySully
Registered Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Big Pine Key, Fl
Posts: 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by SaltySully View Post
Its an odd critter for sure, I have never seen a tunicate with only one spout, or that moves more than just inflating and deflating. To me it looked like a sea apple in the picture.

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk
Just looked at the pictures again, definitely not a sea apple

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk


SaltySully is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2018, 05:27 AM   #440
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana A View Post
This site really needs a like button! Ron I always enjoy reading your posts...a big fan of yours
Thank you! I guess it's party due to my desire to keep learning and my enthusiasm for the hobby and for the marine environment. For me, I think snorkeling is as close as I'm ever going to get to being able to watch what looks like very alien type creatures up close and personal. And becoming a Bailey Mathews National Shell Museum volunteer Shell Ambassador has opened up a whole new venue for me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaltySully View Post
Just looked at the pictures again, definitely not a sea apple

I believe (not 100% sure) sea apples are exclusive to the Pacific Ocean and wouldn't be in the Caribbean.

The two I have at home now are virtually invisible as they bury themselves in the sand and only leave the very small 'snout' above the surface. I'll see about finding one and getting more photos. I'll also ask the 3 marine biologists that work at the museum what they think.

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk



__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/24/2018, 05:31 AM   #441
SaltySully
Registered Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Big Pine Key, Fl
Posts: 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
Thank you! I guess it's party due to my desire to keep learning and my enthusiasm for the hobby and for the marine environment. For me, I think snorkeling is as close as I'm ever going to get to being able to watch what looks like very alien type creatures up close and personal. And becoming a Bailey Mathews National Shell Museum volunteer Shell Ambassador has opened up a whole new venue for me.
There are ones from the carribean they are just not as nice looking. I will post a pick of the next one I collect

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk


SaltySully is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/26/2018, 05:46 AM   #442
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
SaltySully, it turns out you were right. The marine biologist at Bailey Mathews National Shell Museum says it's a Hairy Sea Cucumber (Sclerodactyla briareus). The part I was unaware of is that it's an echinoderm and all echinoderms are protected on Sanibel Island and if I had been caught with it by FWC (Florida Wildlife Commission) I could have been fined up to $500 and the loss of the sea cucumber too!

Good to know. Sanibel has some of, if not the most restrictive collection rules in the State of Florida.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01/26/2018, 06:03 AM   #443
SaltySully
Registered Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Big Pine Key, Fl
Posts: 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
SaltySully, it turns out you were right. The marine biologist at Bailey Mathews National Shell Museum says it's a Hairy Sea Cucumber (Sclerodactyla briareus). The part I was unaware of is that it's an echinoderm and all echinoderms are protected on Sanibel Island and if I had been caught with it by FWC (Florida Wildlife Commission) I could have been fined up to $500 and the loss of the sea cucumber too!

Good to know. Sanibel has some of, if not the most restrictive collection rules in the State of Florida.
I didn't know seacucumbers were protected there also, I knew live seashells were, but that surprised me. Cool find any way.

Sent from my LGMS428 using Tapatalk


SaltySully is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02/22/2018, 06:06 AM   #444
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,720
It's been so warm in SW Florida (and the Keys) this February that the water is already getting warm. We've been 10+ degrees above average for high temps over the last 3 or 4 weeks straight.

I'm thinking a snorkel trip to the Keys in late April isn't out of the question.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03/02/2018, 11:03 AM   #445
sdweller
Registered Member
 
sdweller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Key Largo, Florida
Posts: 47
The water temp is 78 degrees , we just have not had that many cold fronts .
The weather has been outstanding the last few days with less than 10 knots
and good visibility in the 35 - 45 ' range !
It would be a good time for a visit !
Sea Dwellers


sdweller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/03/2018, 12:26 PM   #446
GoNoles
Registered Member
 
GoNoles's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
Posts: 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdweller View Post
The water temp is 78 degrees , we just have not had that many cold fronts .
The weather has been outstanding the last few days with less than 10 knots
and good visibility in the 35 - 45 ' range !
It would be a good time for a visit !
Sea Dwellers
Did this front make it down there? It's windy as all get out up here in West Palm. I'm looking to get down there for a dive soon.


GoNoles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/04/2018, 11:52 AM   #447
flacousa
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
It's been so warm in SW Florida (and the Keys) this February that the water is already getting warm. We've been 10+ degrees above average for high temps over the last 3 or 4 weeks straight.

I'm thinking a snorkel trip to the Keys in late April isn't out of the question.


Just get a shorty it helps in the months before and after the summer around $60 at Amazon, I also got a full size Lycra to fend off Jellyfish and it also helps with cooler waters


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


flacousa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/04/2018, 07:19 PM   #448
water is wet
Registered Member
 
water is wet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Angola, Indiana
Posts: 196
I posted several pages back and probably a year or so ago that I was going and or had gone down and that I would post some pictures but unfortunately photobucket has gone sand done terrible things and the uploader is being difficult so I'm only able to load a few pictures.What are the rest of you doing to post them?

20180110_212331.jpg

20151004_094048.jpg

20170420_152316.jpg


water is wet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/04/2018, 07:26 PM   #449
water is wet
Registered Member
 
water is wet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Angola, Indiana
Posts: 196
I wanted to to post pictures of the food from the restaurant posted in the picture above but for some reason those photos are being difficult so this is what I've got. By the way I've never had Cuban food so I don't have anything to compare it to but my wife and I really loved that place which is located in key west.


Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20170418_195608.jpg (68.4 KB, 24 views)
File Type: jpg 20150405_105556.jpg (42.8 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg 20150405_155154.jpg (43.7 KB, 22 views)
water is wet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/15/2018, 10:56 PM   #450
ahud
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 516
Ron,

Thank you so so so so so much for this thread. I am truly thankful. I am visiting the keys for the first time in September and my wife for our three year anniversary. We have never snorkeled, so this will be our first time. We are either going to shoot for a rental house or I may go for the Blackfin resort! I hate to spend a lot of money as I doubt we will ever be inside.

I recently started a small reef tank so I hope to collect some green zoas and maybe a few little critters. Is there any hope of finding pistol shrimp and shrimp gobies anywhere in the keys? I have loved catching and viewing wildlife since I was a kid. I am lucky that my wife enjoys accompanying me. The keys sound like my paradise.

Luckily we have plenty of time to plan and acquire gear. I think we will buy our own mask, fins, and whatever else needed. I'm going to try to get the Akona gloves you wear as well.

Again, thanks so much. I can't wait to get out there and snorkel! I am tempted to try the canals around Miami for cichlids as well!


ahud is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:15 AM.


TapaTalk Enabled

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2018 Axivo Inc.
Use of this web site is subject to the terms and conditions described in the user agreement.
Reef CentralTM Reef Central, LLC. Copyright 1999-2014
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.3.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.