Honorable Mention Marine Life Behavior Ocean Art 2020 Luke Gordon

Honorable Mention Marine Life Behavior

Luke Gordon

"Take Over"



The Story: We know this particular reef manta ray very well, she is known affectionately as 'Coco' to researchers in the area. Coco is always accompanied by golden trevallies when we see her and with her huge size is always an impressive sight. On this particular day we had had amazing manta action throughout the day, as the afternoon drew to a close we could see a few individuals feeding just 100m or so from shore, I decided to head back in and spend some more time with these gentle giants. Once in the water I could see three individuals somersault feeding, one was Coco, as I was the only one in the water what ensued was pure magic. Coco spent a good 15-20 minutes with me, circling, somersaulting, fly-bys, she was fully interacting with me and it was a very special moment. As she was incredibly comfortable I began to take some shots as she somersaulted right in front of me. As she gracefully danced through the plankton I could see one particular golden trevally taking cover from me in Coco's mouth everytime she somersaulted towards me, Coco would spit the fish out at the bottom of every turn, but as soon a she got back to the top the fish would hide away inside her mouth again. As the opportunity presented itself I quietly dived down and waited for Coco's next somersault, I really wanted the fish to be looking at the camera and to have symmetry from Coco, positioning and timing was everything. I am proud to say after a couple of shots this was the result. A photo which for me tells a thousand words of the incredible experience I had that day.

Location:  West Yaukuve Levu Island, Fiji Islands

Equipment Used:  Canon 5D Mark IV, Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lens, Nauticam NA-5DIV Housing, Dual Inon Z240

Camera Settings: 1/60, F10, ISO 500



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