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'Abnormally friendly’ Critters?

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gopbroek

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Last week on a dive at Palancar a 6-7’ Nurse Shark came up from behind and started nudging one of our group with its head, not aggressive but it seemed to be begging for free meal. The diver initially thought it was another diver until he turned back and got quite a thrill to see a shark. We all later chocked it up to Lion fish hunters encouraging the local wildlife to eat the invasive pests by feeding them samples.
A couple of days later at La Francesa we had a medium to large green Moray out and feeding on Lion fish directly off the spear. He was not shy and afterward he went over to Steve Belmont and wrapped himself around Steve and did a sniff up him until he and Steve were eye to eye. For some reason Steve seems to have abnormally large eyes in situations like this, again the eel was not aggressive just abnormally friendly.
Yesterday while spotting on a Lion fish hunt at Palancar I was about 3’ off of a coral head and I caught a shadow from the side and turned my head to see a medium size Nurse Shark 1’ from my face and swimming hard. He went by and brushed against me and went over to a hunter with a Lion on the spear and took it off like a Marshmallow. Again; not really aggressive but very friendly where lion fish were concerned, he was not going to miss a free meal.
That evening I was talking with another diver at a bar and he told me that at La Francesa, yesterday, they had a ‘large Green Moray’ come out in the open a sniff them.
Has anyone else seen any recent; 'not aggressive but abnormally friendly’ large critter activity associated with Lion fish hunting?
 

Blazinator

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For some reason Steve seems to have abnormally large eyes in situations like this . . .

hilarious:D!!

to the tune of "if your happy and you know it . . ." - If you're wrapped by a moray, crap your pants!
 

BRT

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It kind of startled me in January when I looked across and a big barracuda was swimming right beside Steve on our dive. Took me a minute to realize Steve had a lionfish spear and the barracuda knew it. Later it was a big grouper following him like a puppy.
 

Mike

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Has anyone else seen any recent; 'not aggressive but abnormally friendly’ large critter activity associated with Lion fish hunting?

It's being reported all over the Caribbean. Aggressive is a relative term. Yours is the first I've read of nurse sharks being involved. There are plenty of confused, startled divers reporting morays being overly inquisitive translated -- agressive toward camera housings. Instead of sitting in their dens looking back at the camera, they come right at it (camera) and or the diver.

We need a new education program-- dive masters stop feeding the marine life, they don't 'learn' to eat lionfish by being fed. Fish feeding and manipulation of marine life is looked down upon and understood to be a bad idea for decades and yet, we are at it again, with many dive masters pretending to be educating marine life when in reality a dive master feeding marine life is no different than a dive master who puffs up puffer fish for a diver's camera, they are doing it for the show and for the tips.
 

DandyDon

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I think the park bear feeding started that way. I'm all for the lionfish hunters, but not the fish feeding.
 

judydivescoz

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Last year I dove with Steve. He was a good dive buddy. Not only does he have his spear but he also carried a long handled barbecue fork to take the lion fish off his spear. The fork was hanging off his BC when we dove. I wonder if the Moray/ shark/barracuda sensed whatever remained of the dead lion fish on his "tools" and came close to check it out.
I agree with Don in that killing Lionfish is a great idea but feeding them to shark/barracuda/morays might be creating a big problem in the park.
 

MMM

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Funny, this happened to me just yesterday. I was going to share the pictures I took. The first picture is of a nurse shark swimming straight at me. In the second photo it was face to face with my camera so the shot is the top of its head and one eye. I have not seen nurse shark behaviour like that before; Jeremy says it is from DMs feeding them lion fish.

PS I'm waiting for the genius who decides to teach bull sharks to eat lion fish. What could possibly go wrong?
 
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rick00001967

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Last week on a dive at Palancar a 6-7’ Nurse Shark came up from behind and started nudging one of our group with its head, not aggressive but it seemed to be begging for free meal. The diver initially thought it was another diver until he turned back and got quite a thrill to see a shark. We all later chocked it up to Lion fish hunters encouraging the local wildlife to eat the invasive pests by feeding them samples.
A couple of days later at La Francesa we had a medium to large green Moray out and feeding on Lion fish directly off the spear. He was not shy and afterward he went over to Steve Belmont and wrapped himself around Steve and did a sniff up him until he and Steve were eye to eye. For some reason Steve seems to have abnormally large eyes in situations like this, again the eel was not aggressive just abnormally friendly.
Yesterday while spotting on a Lion fish hunt at Palancar I was about 3’ off of a coral head and I caught a shadow from the side and turned my head to see a medium size Nurse Shark 1’ from my face and swimming hard. He went by and brushed against me and went over to a hunter with a Lion on the spear and took it off like a Marshmallow. Again; not really aggressive but very friendly where lion fish were concerned, he was not going to miss a free meal.
That evening I was talking with another diver at a bar and he told me that at La Francesa, yesterday, they had a ‘large Green Moray’ come out in the open a sniff them.
Has anyone else seen any recent; 'not aggressive but abnormally friendly’ large critter activity associated with Lion fish hunting?

that is a bit disturbing
 

DandyDon

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I don't feed the fish in Michigan.

Bluegill and carp still follow me around.

Go figure.
I think other divers did. It happens - a lot at San Solomon springs where I did my OW. I remember this Mexican tetra (think tiny Piranha with same jaw structure) biting my ears while I was trying to pay attention to the Instructor. The DM saw me with my hands over my ears and thought I hadn't equalized. Why it went for mine, who knows...?
 
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