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Mary Malloy

Thousands of spider crabs gather yet again

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I just want to share with everyone a "Blue Planet" experience in my own backyard. Several times a year, tens of thousands of spider crabs, Leptomithrax gaimardii gather at various locations around Port Phillip Bay. It is believed as a precursor to pairing off and mating but no-one knows for sure. This is not a seasonal event, it can happen anytime. So it is hard to tell divers prepared to travel when to come.

 

Mary

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Wowzers. Fantastic.

 

Alex

 

Hi Alex,

 

I think you have dived this site, Rye pier, with my friend Jimswims.

 

Mary

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Great shots Mary from very challenging conditions, the vis was really poor that day. Went back the next day and the numbers seemed

to have doubled. An amazing phenomenon to witness and I was so happy to have finally caught the peak of the action.

 

Alex I think the closest you got to Rye Pier was having greasy Fish and Chips by the main road opposite.

 

Cheers,

Jim.

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All I can say is 'WOW"

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Thanks for sharing....unbelievable!!!!!

Glad you had a wide-angle on the last image!

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I remember the spider crab aggregation happens from April to July, ostensibly when the water cools off from the summer highs. And there's evidence they moult as well. I can't remember who told me that but it was some biologist. That's an awesome sight and so happy you caught it.

 

Hmmm too bad the giant cuttlefish aggregation in Whyalla is now bad, otherwise it might be worth the trip to attempt both in the winter months of Oz.

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I remember the spider crab aggregation happens from April to July, ostensibly when the water cools off from the summer highs. And there's evidence they moult as well. I can't remember who told me that but it was some biologist. That's an awesome sight and so happy you caught it.

 

Hmmm too bad the giant cuttlefish aggregation in Whyalla is now bad, otherwise it might be worth the trip to attempt both in the winter months of Oz.

 

Hi Drew,

 

Yes for the most part people have reported them at Rye pier around May. I have 2 years of images at Rye in May but I have also seen them in these numbers at other Victorian locations in February and September.

 

Also glad I got the cuttles before they went off.

 

Cheers

Mary

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