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Dive Photo Guide


Emptying the Trash
By Editorial Staff, April 21, 2020 @ 05:00 PM (EST)

A “mototi” octopus uses an old Sprite soda bottle as a new home

Do you ever think your underwater photos are trash? I mean, literally. 

Sure, even the pros produce pics that are absolute garbage. But the sad reality is that many underwater species have learned to repurpose human refuse to their own benefit. Such behavior is common in many so-called “muck diving” hot spots like Lembeh Strait and the Philippines

Even in less remote locales, human refuse has its footprint on the ocean floor. And not all of it is what you’d think of as pollution. From old subway cars repurposed as an artificial reef off the coast of New Jersey to an abandoned underwater game show set in Turks and Caicos, sometimes what’s lost in the ocean isn’t forgotten. 

An old can or bottle can be transformed into an abode for underwater critters

Even a simple plastic cup is a treasure to this octopus

A snoot is used to eliminate the distracting background and highlight the tip of the glass bottle home for this small fish

This unique shot provides a special perspective of an octopus living in a bottle

A yellow goby emerges from the cap of a discarded toothpaste tube

One man’s trash is another octopus’s home

A discarded fish trap makes for a compelling foreground subject on this reef

Talented divemasters can help photographers find subjects hiding in ordinary objects

A tiny eel poses in the mouth of a glass bottle

Plastic containers might seem like pollution, but for these eight-armed critters, they become a protective home

This metal dome was used for an underwater game show in the 1970s in the Turks and Caicos Islands before being left abandoned


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