Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Mola-Mola Moments

video

It's a video that I took while diving in Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida, Bali on July 25th, 26th and August 1st, 2009.
We saw 8 mola-mola (some people call it "sun fish", some call it "moon fish") in total. So lucky!!!

What is mola-mola?
Mola-mola, some people call it "Sun Fish", some people call it "Moon Fish". It's a type of fish who lives in around 300 meters depth underwater (of course!). It has a weird shape, like a disc. Big, yet thin. It has two fins on the top and bottom, instead of on each side of his body!
The mouth is very small compared to its body size. And it makes this fish look very cute! :D

In July to October, people have a chance to greet this special fish in Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida, Bali. It swims up to a shallower place to get his body clean. Spa time! ;) If we are lucky, we can see it in 10-12 meters depth, sometimes even shallower. Sometimes we have to search for them in 40 meters depth and swim against the strong current.

This fish loves to be in the cold water. That's why we could see it during July-October, because the water in Nusa Penida gets colder, around 20 degrees Celcius. Sometimes it could go even lower: 17 degrees! Brrrrrrr!!! Definitely cold for a tropical girl like me... hehehe.. :p

I considered myself very lucky when diving in Nusa Penida on July 25th, 26th and August 1st, 2009. Why?
This was actually my third attempt of mola-mola searching. Last year, I dove in the same site, hoping to see mola-mola, but was unlucky. Check my story here.
But this year, woowwwwww... it was like a mola-mola festive!!! I saw 8 of them in total!!! My heart beats faster when seeing this fish! If only I could jump around underwater, I would! :D

The first mola-mola sighting, we saw it at around 40 meters depth. The second one was also at 40 meters depth. He was there alone, didn't even move. We were waiting, hoping that he would come toward us, but then he didn't. So, Nicky, my dive master, decided to come closer. We swam to him, it was amazing!!! The mola-mola looked at us and swam around us, making a round trip! Sooooo nice!!!!!!! And that's when my camera went error!!! Aaarrrgggghhhh!!! We were at 46.6 meters and my camera housing could only go up to 40 meters. Beyond that, it couldn't handle the water pressure and it made all the buttons pressing the camera and made it to an error mode right away! Damnnnnn!!!
It was still amazing, though. There was no other diver around us (me, Andy - my buddy, Nicky - the dive master). It felt like having a private moment with the famous sun fish!

The next day (Sunday, 26th), we did our first dive in Manta Point and saw 3 manta rays swimming around at the cleaning station for more than half hour! Wooohoooo!!! So damn cool! The water was freezing, tho. It was 21 degrees, but it felt colder.. brrrrrrr!!! It definitely woke me up! Hahahhaa...

The second dive, we went to Crystal Bay again and saw 2 mola-mola. Wooohooooo! Just when I descended, I heard a group of diver making some noise. Hmm.. there must be mola-mola around, but I didn't see anything. Then, suddenly, I saw a big mola-mola in the blue! Whoaaa!!
The second mola-mola, we saw it in 35 meters... this time, I had an up close and personal moment with him. I was so close, I could even kiss him! Hihihi... I swam next to him, under him, and moved to his other side. That's when I realized how thin this fish was!!! Aahhhhh.... soooooooo wonderful!!! And this time, my camera worked! Yeaahhhhh!!! If you watch the video above, it was when I recorded the mola-mola in a siluette with the sun above. Nice color, isn't it? ;)

The weekend after, I was still in Bali and I dove again in Bali. Couldn't get enough of it!
This time, we did 3 dives in Crystal Bay. hihihi... and... we saw 4 mola-mola again in total!!! Yeaaaayyyyyyyyy!!!

The first dive, we saw 3 mola-mola. As soon as I saw the first one, I gave my camera to Nicky and gave him a sign to take picture of me with my new lover! Hahaha...
After having a photo shoot, we swam again and saw another mola-mola... ehm.. two of them!!! (don't be jealous, please). Omigod! It was unbelievable.. being with them, watching them surrounded by long banner fish and some other small fish, swimming and playing around with each other... whoaaa!! Life is good!!!
There was no other divers around us, too! Another private mola-mola show! Wow, so lucky!!!

On the last dive, we saw 1 mola-mola in 40 meters depth. This time, I was so close to him, too and I could even see his eye checkin' me out! Hahaha... sooo cute!!! This was the one in the last part of my video. Take a good look at his eye, he was staring at me, wasn't he? :D LOL

That was my Mola-Mola moments. Had a big smile for more than a week and my mind was full of the image of this cute fish every time! What an amazing experience and perfect weekends getaway! :) *big smile*

6 comments:

dyresti said...

Wuawww! sungguh keren, walo aku cuma bisa liat di videonya aja!!^_^ Mbak kalo bisa liat Mola-Mola gitu ada mitosnya gak? misalnya, abis liat itu ikan trus di kehidupan kita bisa nemuin sesuatu yg jadi kejutan ato apa gitu.. hehehe

the Razzler said...

Dear Nila..

This is a fantastic video!! Love the music, too!!

Mola-Mola is so unique! :)

lilya said...

wow! I can see it... they got a crush on you too^^

novi said...

incredible! you're so lucky nila! i've only seen it once long time ago in Bali. and it wasn't even that close. i saw a huge manta ray when i dived in Gili couple months ago. i felt really lucky!:) so i know exactly how you feel:)

nadia febina said...

nilllzz... kangen you too!
ehh si mola-mola ini lucu banget sih, jadi sirip nya atas bawah gitu ya... gw sm marthijn bingung gitu td ngeliatnya.. ini badan nya yg pipih apa sirip nya yang atas bawah apa gimana.. :)

keren!! :)

kapan yaa, kita bisa diving bareng darl... seru kali yaa... tp lo jagain gue!! :D

Sputnik said...

Great post, mola2 is so under-rated...or not many people knows?!? would love to dive with them as well on fine day...

There's this great presentation of them from TED by a biologist:

http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/tierney_thys_swims_with_the_giant_sunfish.html